Syria 'will stand with Turkey' on Gaza

June 7, 2010 at 9:01 PM
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ISTANBUL, Turkey, June 7 (UPI) -- Syria's president says his country will support "every decision and every action" by Turkey in its effort to have Israel lift its blockade of the Gaza Strip.

Speaking at a news conference in Istanbul Monday, Syrian leader Bashar Assad asserted, "We are not just about condemnation, we are about actions," Haaretz reported.

Standing with Assad, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said his government was ready to supply the Gaza Strip with "everything it needs" and demanded an end to Israel's blockade of the Hamas-controlled territory, Haaretz said.

"What happened on the flotilla is a crime against humanity," Erdogan said, referring to the Israeli Navy's halting of a Gaza-bound ship last week that left nine Turkish nationals dead.

Earlier in the day, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said normalization of Turkish-Israeli relations, severely strained after the deadly confrontation, required Jerusalem's acceptance of an international inquiry into the incident.

"If Israel gives the green light to the formation of an international committee and is ready to answer questions of the committee," Davutoglu said, "Turkish-Israeli relations will have a different course.

"Otherwise, Turkish-Israeli relations cannot be normalized."

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