Israel mulls water imports from Turkey

Israel mulling buying wa

October 19, 2009 10:26


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Israel has recently begun talks with Turkey on the possibility of purchasing water from it, as part of the Water Authority's attempts to ensure sufficient reserves in the face of dwindling local levels. The Foreign Ministry, which is currently conducting the negotiations, had held talks with Ankara on the subject in 2000-2006, but the plans to import water from Turkey were eventually dropped because of high costs, as well as technical issues. The current round of talks might come as something as a surprise amid tensions between Ankara and Jerusalem, which recently peaked after Turkey refused to let Israel participate in a joint NATO drill within its borders last week and a Turkish state-run television station aired anti-Israeli TV drama Ayrilik, which depicts IDF soldiers as murderers. The Foreign Ministry's deputy director-general for Western Europe, Naor Gilon, called Turkey's charge d'affaires Ceylan Ozen to Jerusalem to protest the show. Army Radio reported on Monday that Ankara was sending a new ambassador to Israel, and that both sides hoped that the change of personnel would help improve the atmosphere between the countries. The new envoy is expected to present his credentials to President Shimon Peres in a matter of weeks.

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