Israel Retaliates By Kicking Out Consul After Ankara Expels Ambassador

In a tit-for-tat move, Israel has asked a Turkish consul to leave the country, according to the Israeli foreign ministry.

A ministry spokesman said the official was asked to return to Turkey "for consultations for a period of time," according to RT.

The decision was also likely influenced by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's strident rhetoric. On Monday, he accused Israel of carrying out "genocide" against the Palestinians. He also referred to the country as a "terrorist state."

In response, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused the Turkish president of being "among Hamas' biggest supporters...there is no doubt that he well understands terrorism and slaughter...I suggest that he not preach morality to us."

Earlier in the day, Turkey had asked Israeli Ambassador Eitan Naeh to leave the country "for a while" in protest of the massacre of 60 Gazans who had gathered to protest the opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem on Monday.

Naeh was summoned to the foreign ministry on Tuesday and asked to "return to his country for a period of time," according to an official who leaked the news to Israeli media. Turkey said on Monday it would recall its ambassadors from Tel Aviv and Washington.

Naeh

Eitan Naeh

Naeh was appointed ambassador to Turkey in December 2016 after the two countries ended a six-year rupture in relations stemming from the deadly Gaza flotilla raid, which left eight Turkish nationals dead in international waters, killed by Israeli commandos.

Meanwhile, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim urged Islamic countries to review their ties with Israel and said Ankara was calling an extraordinary summit of the world's main pan-Islamic body on Friday.

"Islamic countries should without fail review their relations with Israel," Yildirim told his ruling party in parliament.

"The Islamic world should move as one, with one voice, against this massacre," he added.

Turkey on Monday called for a meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation on Friday. Erdogan currently holds the rotating chairmanship of the body. Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said the meeting would take place in Istanbul.

To try and rally support for the meeting, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu called a dozen of his counterparts from various majority Muslim countries.

Tags