Expert: Reconciliation with Turkey helps Israel

Islamic expert Dr. Ephraim Herrera tells Arutz Sheva that Israel and Turkey have mutual interests, but Israel needs to remain vigilant.

Eliran Aharon ,

Dr. Ephraim Herrera
Dr. Ephraim Herrera
Eliran Aharon

Saturday’s terrorist attack in Gaziantep, Turkey, in which 51 people were murdered, is more than likely the work of the Islamic State (ISIS) jihadist group, Islamic expert Dr. Ephraim Herrera told Arutz Sheva on Sunday.

“The target was Kurdish civilians, and there is a war these days between the Islamic State and Kurdish soldiers in Syria, so this is a ‘fair war’ for ISIS to wage these attacks in Turkey or any place where there are Kurdish people,” he said.

ISIS’ strategy, explained Herrera, “is to threaten people, to threaten civilians with violent attacks. They are convinced that they will win this war.”

Referring to the reconciliation attack between Israel and Turkey, which was ratified over the weekend by the Turkish parliament, Dr. Herrera explained that “there are many interests for Turkey to renew its relationship with Israel.”

These interests include Turkey’s desire to appear as a “moderate state”, as well as its need for gas and energy.

Turkey also has interest in cooperating with Israel about possible attacks along its borders and also has a mutual enemy – Iran.

Israel also has interests in the relationship with Turkey, “but we have to be vigilant,” said Dr. Herrera.

“Erdogan has always supported the Muslim Brotherhood and even the most radical among them, their spiritual leader Al-Qardawi,” he noted. “As well, Gulen – the archenemy of Erdogan – is the most important leader of true moderate Islam. So [Erdogan] is fighting moderate Islam.”

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, pointed out Dr. Herrera, “succeeded in something that experts thought was impossible. Turkey and Egypt are enemies. Turkey supported [Mohammed] Morsi against [Abdel Fattah] Al-Sisi. But despite this fact, the Israeli government succeeded in renewing its relations with both Egypt and Turkey.”



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