Israel lowers level of representation in Turkey

Foreign ministry decides embassy in Turkey will be managed by lower-level diplomat, amid Erdogan's clear lack of desire for good relations.

Nitzan Keidar ,

Israeli embassy in Turkey
Israeli embassy in Turkey

The political system in Jerusalem has had enough of trying to be the responsible adult in relations between Israel and Turkey. Recently, the Foreign Ministry decided to consciously lower the level of representation in the Israeli embassy in Ankara to the rank of second secretary.

A few months ago, following the situation in Gaza and after a slight warming in the relations between the two countries, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan decided to return the Turkish ambassador in Tel Aviv for consultations and immediately thereafter to invite Israeli Ambassador Eitan Naeh to a meeting in which he was told that he must leave the country.

Israel responded by ordering the Turkish consul General to pack his belongings and leave the country. In response, Israel's Consul General in Istanbul, Levy Safri, was expelled from Turkey.

In recent months, Erdogan has not concealed his distaste for Israel and attacked it on every possible occasion. Jerusalem has realized that, after extensive diplomatic efforts to renew relations following the Mavi Marmara crisis, Erdogan is not sincere in his desire to maintain good relations with Israel.

As a result, it was decided not to appoint a new ambassador or even a consul to serve in Turkey. Israel also deliberately sent lower-level representatives to official events of the Turkish government.

The Foreign Ministry confirmed the details. "The manpower of the Israeli missions in Turkey reflects Turkey's decision in everything regarding Israeli representation in Ankara and Istanbul. It is best for the benefit of both sides that they know to return to the level of full representation," the ministry said.