Turkish PM says Turkel C'tee report has 'no credibility'

C'tee releases report after investigation into flotilla incident, saying actions were legal pursuant to int'l law.

By ASSOCIATED PRESS, DAN IZENBERG
January 23, 2011 17:18
1 minute read.
Erdogan flag

Erdogan flag 311. (photo credit: Associated Press)

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday dismissed the Turkel Committee's findings defending the actions of IDF troops in the interception of a Turkish-led protest flotilla to Gaza last year.

Erdogan told reporters in Ankara that the report had "no value or credibility."

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According to the concluding remarks of the Turkel Committee's members and international observers, "The naval blockade imposed on the Gaza Strip – in view of the security circumstances and Israel's efforts to comply with its humanitarian obligations – was legal pursuant to the rules of international law. The actions carried out by Israel on May 31, 2010, to enforce the naval blockade had the regrettable consequences of the loss of human life and physical injuries. Nonetheless, and despite the limited number of uses of force for which we could not reach a conclusion, the actions taken were found to be legal pursuant to the rules of international law."

The commission, officially known as the Public Commission to Examine the Maritime Incident of May 31, 2010, released the first of two scheduled reports on Sunday.

The commission concluded that on board the Mavi Marmara and the other flotilla vessels was a group of IHH and affiliated activists (the IHH activists) that violently opposed the Israelis boarding. The IHH activists who participated in that violence were civilians taking a direct part in hostilities.

"Overall, the IDF personnel acted professionally in the faces of extensive and unanticipated violence. This included continuing to switch back and forth between less-lethal and lethal weapons in order to address the nature of the violence directed at them," the commission said.


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