Israeli delegation in Ankara 370.
(photo credit: REUTERS/Umit Bektas)
An Israeli delegation left Ankara on Monday night after laying the groundwork
for the possibility of full reconciliation with Turkey, an Israeli official
“It was a good meeting. We agreed on all aspects, including an
agreed text,” the official said, adding that a joint text was prepared but not
Among the key issues under discussion was Prime Minister
Binyamin Netanyahu’s pledge to conclude an “agreement on
compensation/non-liability” with the families of nine Turkish activists, killed
by the IDF aboard the Mavi Marmara in 2010 as it attempted to break the Israeli
naval blockade of Gaza.
The families have told the Turkish media that
they are not interested in compensation, and they have continued to sue Israel
in an Istanbul court.
But the Turkish delegation, led by Deputy Prime
Minister Bulent Arinc, has continued to pursue the compensation offer with the
Israeli delegation, led by National Security Adviser Yaakov
During Monday’s meeting, the two delegations agreed on a
mechanism by which to calculate the compensation figure, which included
parameters and principles but did not discuss the actual sum, according to an
“As soon as the figures are agreed upon, they go through the
system in both countries,” the official said.
After that, the process
will start to fully resume diplomatic relations, the official said, adding that
the two delegations would be holding more meetings in the coming days.
Turkey broke its diplomatic ties with Israel after
the Mavi Marmara deaths, demanding an apology and compensation.
to consider restoration of ties only after Netanyahu called Turkey’s Prime
Minister Tayyip Erdogan and apologized for Israel’s role in the deaths.
Netanyahu did so at the tail end of US Barak Obama’s visit to Israel in
While in Istanbul on Sunday, US Secretary of State John Kerry
urged Turkish leaders to restore relations with Israel. The United States, along
with Israel and Turkey, can form an important alliance to combat regional
threats such as Iran’s nuclear weapons program and extremist groups in Syria,
Reuters contributed to this report.