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.

 

Ansar al-Sharia denies killing of Abu Iyadh in US air strike

Egypt President in Sinai after jihadist attacks on security forces

Hezbollah backs Syria army in major assault on border city

No guarantee of success as Iran nuclear talks inch closer to lasting deal

Lawlessness in Libya poses real danger for Tunisia

Erdogan moots possibility of snap election

Coalitions of Syria rebels battle regime forces in Aleppo

Syria mosque explosion kills at least 25 Nusra fighters

Yemen Huthi rebels ‘attack’ various areas in Saudi Arabia

Egypt ‘in state of war’ on second anniversary of Islamist ouster

Rockets from Sinai strike Israel

Palestinians arrest 100 Hamas members in West Bank

Erdogan inaugurates public mosque in palace

Islamists form alliance in battle for Aleppo

Top Tunisian jihadist reportedly killed by US strike in Libya

Emir attends joint Shiite, Sunni prayers in Kuwait

Hamas denies involvement in Sinai attacks

4 Qaeda suspects killed in US drone attack in Yemen

'Series of errors' behind Air Algerie crash in Mali

Ankara has no plans for imminent intervention in Syria

21 killed in clashes, strikes in Yemen's Aden

GCC states vow united stand against IS mosque bombings

Palestinians protest one year after teenager burned alive

Egypt vows to wipe out 'dens of terror'

Tunisia arrests eight in connection with beach massacre

Youth in Tunisia 'ripe for radicalisation'

UN sends mission to 'assess' South Sudan atrocities

Syria urges citizens to enlist

AQAP step up campaign to eradicate qat

Iraq Christians train for jihad against IS

British FM: 'No breakthrough yet' in Iran nuclear talks

UN imposes first sanctions on six South Sudan generals

Libya rival governments will not return to peace talks

Fighting rages in Yemen’s Aden

Egypt government adopts anti-terror law

Kurds warn Turkey against any ‘aggression’ in Syria

Kuwait makes DNA tests mandatory after suicide bombing

Kuwait parliament approves deficit budget on oil slide

Pro-Erdogan candidate becomes new speaker of Turkey parliament

‘War’ in Sinai Peninsula as clashes with ISIS fighters rage on

All 38 victims of Tunisia beach massacre identified

36 killed in wave of IS attack on Egyptian soldiers

Iran vs. Israel gets cartoon treatment

IAEA chief to fly to Iran for nuclear talks

Saudi prince pledges fortune to charity