A group of angry Israelis announced on Thursday night that they will leave for Cyprus next week on a flotilla and call for an end to the Turkish occupation of half of the island and its reunification under Cypriot rule.
The group includes Alex Goldfarb, who was an MK in the Tzomet and Yiud parties in the 1990s, and Meretz activist Pinhas Har-Zahav of Modi’in.
An unnamed wealthy Israeli donor is subsidizing the initiative.
MKs on the Right accused the security cabinet on Thursday of buckling under Turkish pressure when it decided to release every Turkish passenger on the Gaza flotilla, even if there was explicit photographic evidence that they attacked IDF soldiers.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu urged the step in an effort to repair damaged relations with Turkey, and the security cabinet ministers obliged.
The Turkish activists were greeted as heroes when they returned to their country on Thursday. One even boasted that he made an effort to die as a martyr but was unsuccessful.
“I understand Netanyahu’s desire to minimize damage, but I cannot
understand the betrayal of the soldiers who see the terrorists who shot
at them and stabbed them leaving the country without trial,” National
Union MK Arye Eldad said. “Israel has unjustifiably freed many
terrorists from prison in the past, but I don’t remember an instance
when terrorists who attempted to murder soldiers were not even brought
United Arab List-Ta’al MK Ahmed Tibi responded to the departure of the
Turkish activists by calling the charges against them baseless.
“There is no proof that they were carrying arms or that they attacked
soldiers,” Tibi said. “Israel knows that the tragic result of firing on
peace activists is rightfully seen by the world as a crime, so they are
trying to cut their losses. Israel had no choice but to release these
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