'IDF in contact with Turkish army'

Ashkenazi stresses importance of ties with Ankara, despite flotilla.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
July 6, 2010 14:09
1 minute read.
IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi

ashkenazi GOOD 311. (photo credit: IDF Spokesperson)

IDF Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi said Tuesday he remains in contact with the chief of staff of the Turkish Army, and dialogue is continuing at all levels of the army.

"Relations [with Turkey] are important, and we must maintain them during turbulent times," he said.

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Ashkenazi said that although Turkey may be undergoing a transformation, "Erdogan has opposition."

Despite a serious of recent diplomatic spats with Ankara, Ashkenazi confirmed that the was "personally in contact with the Turkish chief of staff," and said that the two had spoken even after the Israeli interception of a Gaza-bound flotilla which left nine Turks dead.

Ashkenazi's comments came hours after Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman told Army Radio that Israel would not deliver an apology to Turkey over the flotilla raid.

Lieberman was reiterating comments he made the previous day, in response to the Turkish foreign minister's threatening to cut ties with Israel.


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