Ehud Barak: Turkey-Israel tensions prevent stability in Middle East
Tensions between Turkey and Israel do not help to establish stability in the Middle East, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said after meeting with U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon at the U.N. headquarters this week, CNN Turk reported.
Regarding the upcoming meeting of Turkish and Israeli officials in Geneva this weekend, Barak said he does not know the details of the negotiations.
The meeting in Geneva was scheduled after a phone call between Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who called and thanked Erdogan for sending two fire-fighting planes early Friday to put out a forest fire in Israel.
Nine Turks were killed when Israeli forces raided a Gaza-bound flotilla in international waters on May 31. The incident cast a serious blow on Turkey-Israeli relations.
After the incident, Erdogan repeatedly accused Israel of conducting a policy of "state terrorism" and demanded an official apology from Israel, urging it to pay damages for the victims.