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Netanyahu slams Erdogan over Gaza ‘genocide’ remarks

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Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivers a speech during the opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem on May 14, 2018. The United States moved its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem after months of global outcry, Palestinian anger and exuberant praise from Israelis over President Donald Trump’s decision tossing aside decades of precedent. / AFP PHOTO / MENAHEM KAHANA

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu slammed the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday for accusing Israel of “state terror” and “genocide” after troops killed dozens of Gazans in border clashes.

“Erdogan is one of the biggest supporters of Hamas, so there’s no doubt he’s an expert on terror and slaughter,” Netanyahu said in a Hebrew-language Twitter post.

“I’d suggest he doesn’t preach morality to us.”

Erdogan, a staunch supporter of the Palestinians, called Israel a “terror state” and accused it of “genocide” on Monday after clashes erupted along Gaza’s border as the US opened its Israel embassy in Jerusalem.

Most of the 60 Palestinians killed on Monday were shot by Israeli snipers, Gaza’s health ministry has said, and incloude a baby who died from tear gas inhalation

Turkey announced three days of national mourning and recalled its ambassadors to Israel and the United States over the violence which took place as the US moved its embassy to Jerusalem.

Erdogan regards himself as a champion of the Palestinian cause and last year held a summit of Islamic countries to denounce US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

However Turkey also maintains full trade and diplomatic links with the Jewish state after a 2016 reconciliation deal ended a dispute over the deadly storming of a Turkish ship by Israeli commandos.


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