Turkey, Israel to announce end to freeze in ties soon


Turkey’s foreign minister has reportedly said that his country and Israel would soon release a joint statement, announcing an end to six years of a freeze in their relations.

Mevlut Cavusoglu made the remarks in a recent cabinet meeting attended by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to discuss the process of reconciliation with Tel Aviv, Turkish daily Hurriyet reported on Monday.

The top Turkish diplomat said at the meeting that the reconciliation process was close to completion and that the statement was to follow “in the coming days,” it said.

In September 2010, Turkey suspended its military ties with Israel and expelled the Israeli envoy from Ankara over Tel Aviv’s refusal to apologize over its killing of 10 Turkish nationals aboard an aid vessel bound for Israeli-besieged Gaza.

Omer Celik, a spokesman for Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party, told Haber Turk TV two weeks ago that Turkey and Israel were moving closer to striking a reconciliation agreement.

Back then, it was reported that the agreement would resolve the issue of compensations and envisages that Ankara and Tel Aviv exchange envoys and hold talks on the restart of gas exports to Turkey.

Celik’s remarks came a few days after the Israeli prime minister’s office said that progress had been made in reconciliation efforts during their recent negotiations in Zurich, Switzerland.

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