First Published: 2012-11-20

 

Erdogan on Gaza: This is not self defence, this is ethnic cleansing

 

Turkish PM accuses Israel of ‘ethnic cleansing’ in Gaza, as Palestinian death toll from six days of bombardment hits 116.

 

Middle East Online

‘Israel will answer for innocent blood’

ANKARA - Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday accused Israel of "ethnic cleansing" in Gaza, as six Palestinians were killed in a new wave of Israeli strikes on Gaza, medics said, raising the Palestinian toll from six days of bombardment to 116.

The new raids ended a night of relative quiet in which no-one was killed for the first time since Israel launched its relentless aerial assault on rocket-firing militants in the enclave on November 14, Palestinian medics said.

Erdogan said Israel's air raids could not be considered self defence.

"Israel is committing ethnic cleansing by ignoring peace in this region and violating international law," Erdogan said. "It is occupying the Palestinian territory step by step."

The infuriated premier said Israeli air raids against Gaza could not be deemed self defence, accusing Western countries of aiding what it called a "terrorist state" by condoning its violence in the Middle East.

"Sooner or later, Israel will answer for the innocent blood it has shed so far," he said.

On Monday, Erdogan said the United Nations "turned a blind eye" on Israeli attacks against Palestinians, accusing the international body of double standards against Muslims.

More than 920 people have been injured in the bombing campaign.

Emergency services spokesman Adham Abu Selmiya named the latest victims as Abdel Rahman Hamed, who died in Safina just north of Gaza City, and Mohammed Badr who was killed in a strike on Deir al-Balah in central Gaza.

Earlier he said another three people died in separate strikes on the northern Gaza Strip and a fourth had been killed in an area just south of Gaza City.

Among the latest victims were 15-year-old Yahya Mohammed Awad who was hunting birds near the beach when a missile hit the northern Sudaniya area, and two men who were killed in the nearby town of Beit Lahiya: Yahya Maaruf, a farmer who was working his land, and another man called Bilal Birawi, 20.

And in Mughraqa, just south of Gaza City, another strike killed Mahmud Rizk al-Zahar, he said.

Overnight, the Israeli military said it attacked about 100 targets with a combination of aircraft, warships and artillery, one of which targeted "a financial institution used by Hamas".

Palestinian officials confirmed that National Islamic Bank in Gaza City, which was set up by the Islamist movement that runs Gaza, was severely damaged in a raid.

Hamas officials and witnesses also said that strikes hit the homes of several leaders within its armed wing, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades.

Among those targeted were the homes of senior Hamas military commander Raed Aatar in the southern city of Rafah, as well as that of Abu Anza, a Qassam official in Khan Yunis, also in the south, where raids also targeted Islamic Jihad offices.

Monday was the bloodiest day of the Israeli operation since it was launched on Wednesday, with 33 people killed.

During the late evening, a family of four was killed in an attack on Beit Lahiya, and two teenage brothers were killed in Rafah.

During the day, warplanes had attacked Gaza City's Shuruq tower media centre -- the second time the building has been targeted -- killing a senior Islamic Jihad militant.

Islamic Jihad sources named him as Ramez Harb and said he was a senior commander in its armed wing, the Al-Quds Brigades.

 

New government in Yemen plus cut in fuel prices

11 Egypt policemen killed in Sinai bomb blast

US army back in Somalia

Paris, Riyadh 'finalising' $3bn Lebanon arms deal

Sudan orders Iran to close cultural centres

Syria arrests pro-regime activists over criticism

Libya pro-Islamist figure presents rival cabinet lineup

Israel faces mounting criticism over Palestinian land grab

Saudi Arabia arrests 88 suspected extremists in 'anti-terror' drive

New UN chief for South Sudan faces ‘huge challenge’

US air strikes target senior Shebab officials in Somalia

‘Scourge of terrorism’ pushes Africa to intensify cooperation

Relatives of missing Iraq soldiers storm parliament in Baghdad

IS accused of 'systematic ethnic cleansing' in Iraq

UK announces tougher measures against Britons planning jihad

Algeria hosts new round of Mali peace talks

US launches new round of air strikes around Iraq dam

Turkey summons US charge d'affaires over Snowden claims

Turkey new PM promises peace with Kurds

Will UN Human Rights Council investigate IS abuses?

Iran convicts Ahmadinejad's vice president for embezzlement

Fierce clashes shatter uneasy calm near armistice line in Golan Heights

Turkey detains dozens of police in new nationwide raids

Libya loses control of Tripoli to Islamist-led militias

Thousands of Huthis defy UN in new show of strength

Iraq presses fightback against jihadist-led militants

Wounded Gazans need long-term care

Britain to go tougher on jihadist suspects

Libyan Islamist militiamen control US embassy compound

Israel shoots down drone over occupied Golan Heights

Yemen army suffers heavy losses in new wave of Qaeda attacks

Turkish army breaks silence on Kurdish peace talks

Islamic State offers grim inspiration to African extremists

Shebab target intelligence HQ in Somalia

Israel expropriates 988 acres of Palestinian land in West Bank

Iraq recaptures Amerli from Islamic State in biggest success so far

Saudi King calls for ‘strong and rapid action’ against jihadists

Jihadists distribute Yazidi women as spoils of war to fighters

Gulf countries resolve six-month dispute with Qatar

Egypt reduces Badie death sentence to life in prison

AU forces liberate former Shebab stronghold in Somalia

Philippines enters war in Syria!

Kurds put aside old rivalries to battle jihadists in Iraq

Iran says new sanctions cast doubt on US sincerity

US imposes new sanctions on Iran