Report: Israel to apologize to Turkey

Ben-Eliezer denies agreeing to compensate for flotilla injuries.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
July 2, 2010 08:50
1 minute read.
Industry, Trade and Labor Minister Binyamin Ben-El

ben eliezer 311. (photo credit: Eli Neeman)

Israel is prepared to apologize to Turkey for the flotilla incident and to compensate the families of the injured parties, Turkish newspaper Huriyyet reported on Friday. Industry, Trade and Labor Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer's office has denied the reports.

According to a different Turkish paper, Zaman, during the secret meeting between Industry, Trade and Labor Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer and Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu in Brussels, Davutoglu threatened that Israel-Turkey relations may worsen, with Turkey closing its airspace to commerical flights, as well as military ones, should Israel fail to apologize.

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Huriyyet reported that Ben-Eliezer signaled that Israel is willing to apologize, and even pay the families of those inured in the IDF raid on the Mavi Marmara.

However, Ben-Eliezer has denied that Israel will compensate those injured on the flotilla.

"No one intends to do that, and the minister did not promise anything," Ben-Eliezer's spokesman said.

“There will be a second meeting if the Israeli side takes a step toward [meeting] our demands,” a Turkish diplomatic source told Huriyyet on Thursday. “We do not categorically dismiss meeting with Israeli officials at this level.”

 Huriyyet also reported that Israel initiated the clandestine meeting, despite the fact that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's office stated that it Turkey made the first contact.


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