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Palmer Report Release : Turkey Still Adamant

The New York Times has leaked the Palmer Report. The report takes the Israeli view on the legality of the Gaza blockade despite that this position is at odds with the majority of the international community and authorities, including Turkey.

‘The report noted that the panel did not have the power to compel testimony or demand documents, but instead had to rely on information provided by Israel and Turkey. Therefore, its conclusions cannot be considered definitive in either fact or law. ‘

The report wrongly argues that Israel’s blockade does not constitute collective punishment ‘which would be illegal’, and that the naval blockade is necessary for Israel’s ‘security’. Further, the report smears the IHH without evidence. It also dissembles when it describes the direction in which the Mavi Marmara was heading prior to attack by Israel.

The report says:

’107. Material before the Panel indicates that between 10.58 p.m. and 11.58 p.m. on 30
May 2010 the Mavi Marmara changed course from a bearing of 222º to one of 185º.

However, there is dispute about the significance of this. The Turkish report states that
this course was directed towards a point between Al-Arish and the Suez Canal; while
Israel maintains it in fact turned the vessels more directly towards Gaza.

Given the distance of the vessels from shore, it is hard to draw a firm conclusion as to their
intention from their course alone. Significantly, although the Israeli Navy continued to
issue warnings, no radio message was transmitted by the flotilla indicating that its course
or intended destination had been changed.

108. On the best view we can form of the matter we believe it was reasonable in the
circumstances for the Israeli Navy to conclude that the vessels of the flotilla intended to
proceed to Gaza. That is what they repeatedly said. That intention was consistent with
an intention to breach the blockade.

The report fails to note above that the Israelis jammed radio communications from the vessels prior to their attack. Further in the report though, it is noted that

112. It seems that the decision to commence the take-over operation by surprise just
before dawn was motivated by the desire to avoid publicity as much as by operational considerations.

This was reinforced by the communication blackout imposed against
the Mavi Marmara.”

Ali Abunimah was tracking the vessel prior to and at the time of the attack.

UPDATED: Mavi Marmara was fleeing west at full-speed at time Israel claims “rioters initiate confrontation with IDF soldiers,” and had already been under sustained attack for some time.
The ship Mavi Marmara was not heading toward Israel or Israeli territorial waters when it was attacked, boarded and comandeered by Israeli forces in the early hours of 31 May in the international waters of the Mediterranean Sea approximately 85 miles west of Haifa. Had it stayed on its heading at that time it would not even have approached Gaza’s waters.

Automatic Identification System (AIS) data transmitted by the Mavi Marmara and captured on the web site Marine Traffic indicates that prior to the Israeli attack, the Mavi Marmara, and presumably the rest of the flotilla in close formation, were traveling due south, parallel to the coast of Israel at a distance of more than 80 miles — well outside Israel’s 12-mile territorial limit. At 00:56:46 UTC (Coordinated Universal Time), or 3:56 am local time (UTC+3), according to the AIS data, Mavi Marmara was at coordinates N 32° 47′ 37.3518″, E 33° 31′ 34.14″ and moving south southwest on heading 184 at 7.4 knots.

At 01:35:20 UTC, or 4:35 am local time, the ship had apparently accelerated to 11 knots and begun to turn west, directly away from Israel. At that point it was located at N 32° 42′ 52.848″, E 33° 31′ 0.2604″ and moving southwest on heading 195.

At 01:51 UTC (4:51 am local), the Twitter account @ShipToGazaGr, which was in direct contact with the two Greek-flagged flotilla ships Eleftheri Mesogeios and Sfendoni tweeted, “we have lost comms with ship, last contact was mentioning attack, we are in alert mode.”

At that moment, 01:51:00 UTC, Mavi Marmara was already due almost straight west on heading 247 away from Israel and the Gaza Strip and had sped up to 12.6 knots.

It is clear from the tracking map that the fleet was not heading toward Gaza or Israel before or at the time of the attack and was in international waters. The Palmer report misrepresents.

The Israelis have been upset about the assessment by the Palmer report since:

110. The Panel questions whether it was reasonable for the Israeli Navy to board the
vessels at the time and place that they did. There are several factors to be weighed in that
equation. The boarding commenced at approximately 4.30 a.m., before dawn had
broken.

The distance from the blockade zone was substantial—64 nautical miles.

There were several hours steaming before the blockade area would be reached. Then
there is the fact that the boarding attempt was made by surprise, without any immediate
prior warning.

The last radio warning had been transmitted at some point between
12.41 a.m. and 2.00 a.m.—at least two and a half hours prior to the boarding
commencing.

The vessels were never asked to stop or to permit a boarding party to
come on board. No efforts were made to fire warning shells or blanks in an effort to
change the conduct of the captains. While it must have been clear to the flotilla captains
that the Israeli Navy had been shadowing them for some time, nothing was
communicated about the immediate intentions of the IDF to board the vessels by force.

and later, the report’s assessment that

117. Israel’s decision to board the vessels with such substantial force at a great
distance from the blockade zone and with no final warning immediately prior to the
boarding was excessive and unreasonable:
a. Non-violent options should have been used in the first instance. In
particular, clear prior warning that the vessels were to be boarded and a
demonstration of dissuading force should have been given to avoid the type
of confrontation that occurred;
b. The operation should have reassessed its options when the resistance to the
initial boarding attempt became apparent so as to minimize casualties.

The Palmer report affirms that 5 of those killed on the Mavi Marmara were shot by cowardly IDF from behind. [p. 59] with ‘significant mistreatment of passengers by Israeli authorities’ after the flotilla takeover [p.61]

Although not all the passengers allege mistreatment, in none of the
events to which the statements of the 93 witnesses relate are the witnesses generally more
consistent than upon this matter.

Further [p.65]:

145. There was significant mistreatment of passengers by Israeli authorities after
the take-over of the vessels had been completed through until their deportation.
This included physical mistreatment, harassment and intimidation, unjustified
confiscation of belongings and the denial of timely consular assistance.

Israel’s excuse of ‘security’ does not justify its actual human rights abuses, including its attack of the passengers on the Mavi Marmara and its overall collective punishment of the people of Gaza of which the naval blockade forms a part. Importantly, the Palmer report fails to recognise the impact of Israel’s naval blockade on Gaza’s fishing industry on which many depend for their livelihood nor those to whom they sell their produce – the beleaguered population of Gaza. According to Save the Children UK in its 2010 Review “Child Rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory” ’85% of maritime areas for fishing are blocked to Palestinians, affecting the livelihoods of an estimated 178,000 people—12% of the population’.

The Palmer report was a setup job at the request of the US to UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon to counter the UN HRC report which is due for discussion at the UNGA this month. With a conservative NZ politician at the helm and the US pawn human rights abuser Uribe involved, there’s no surprise that the findings of the Palmer report are deceptive and favourable to the Israeli interpretations of its piracy at sea and collective punishment.

Turkey has remained adamant that Israel must end its illegal blockade on the people of Gaza, make an apology for its flotilla murders and compensate the families of those murdered.

Whilst erroneously suggesting the blockade was legal, the Palmer report [p.74-75] recommended that

  • An appropriate statement of regret should be made by Israel in respect of
    the incident in light of its consequences.
  • Israel should offer payment for the benefit of the deceased and injured
    victims and their families, to be administered by the two governments
    through a joint trust fund of a sufficient amount to be decided by them.
  • Turkey and Israel should resume full diplomatic relations, repairing their
    relationship in the interests of stability in the Middle East and
    international peace and security. The establishment of a political
    roundtable as a forum for exchanging views could assist to this end.

UPDATE 9
Palestinian civil society welcomes Turkey’s Decision to Suspend All Military Ties with Israel and Lower Diplomatic Relations

UPDATE 8

How the zionist elite work over Turkey internally – see this article by a WINEP AIPAC shill, running down the AKP and singing up the zio-friendly CHP/RPP which is falsely cast as progressive and leftist. In reality, the new Kemalism is fascist, just like the old Kemalism, but the military control in this Kemalism is very useful for the zio-imperialists. Another useful indicator of zio-imperial shillery re turkey is the code word ‘neo-ottamanism’.
Israel’s ruling elite are addicted to belligerent militarism – is the smoke from their nostrils meant to obscure Israel’s crimes?
The UN Palmer Inquiry and Israel’s Attack on the Mavi Marmara

UPDATE 7

The Turkish demand to end the Gaza siege will put Arab states on the spot. They cannot maintain their silence. This goes especially for Egypt, which disgracefully reneged on its commitment last May to reopen the Rafah crossing with Gaza, undoubtedly as a result of pressure from the US, which still retains enormous influence with Egypt’s military.’

PM: Turkey to impose more sanctions on Israel, boost presence in east Med Erdogan:

“Israel has always acted like a spoiled child in the face of all UN decisions that concern it. It assumes that it can continue to act like a spoiled child and will get away with it.”

“If the measures [we have] taken so far [against Israel] are part of a Plan B, then there will also be a Plan C. Different steps will be taken depending on the course of developments. … We are totally suspending our commercial, military and defense ties. They are being frozen entirely,” he added, without clarifying what the next round of sanctions might include.

Officials at the Prime Ministry, however, elaborated later in the day that commercial ties with Israel will not be affected, adding that the commercial ties Erdo?an mentioned refer to the commercial aspect of defense relations. Turkey did not impose a trade embargo on Israel but suspended ongoing defense projects and purchases from Israeli defense firms.


Turkey’s total exports to Israel were around $2.082 billion in 2010 and $1.382 billion over the course of the first seven months of 2011. Turkey imported goods from Israel totaling $1.359 billion in 2010 and $1.180 billion in the first seven months of 2011.

Turkey and Israel signed a tourism cooperation agreement in Jerusalem on June 1, 1992 and Turkey became the second most-popular tourism destination for Israelis. Turkey received 511,435 Israeli tourists in 2007; 558,183 in 2008; 311,600 in 2009 and only 109,600 in 2010.

Turkish-Israeli tension from a domestic policy perspective

UPDATE 6

Turkey says jointly planning Palestinians UN upgrade campaign

“Recognition of a Palestinian state is not a favor for the Palestinians, it is the Palestinian people’s most natural right and our debt to them,” Davuto?lu said. “It is time to pay the debt.”

‘Davuto?lu said keeping Gaza and the West Bank under occupation is already illegal and that it is unacceptable to see the blockade over an illegally occupied territory as legal.

On Saturday, Davuto?lu said Turkey would start procedures to challenge Israel’s naval blockade of Gaza at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague, Netherlands.

He said to end the illegal Gaza blockade, Turkey will continue its legal struggle in international sphere. Noting that Shaath was also briefed by steps Turkey will be taken regarding Israel, Davuto?lu said he shared his views about a UN General Assembly decision to take Israel to the ICJ.

Davuto?lu said Turkey is wrapping up its works to challenge Israel’s Gaza blockade in the ICJ and that he received the support of Arab League and the Organization for the Islamic Cooperation. ‘

The ziolobby mobilises against Turkey with threats against EU membership. As if Israel would be admitted.

‘The EJC echoed the words of the report, which recommends that Turkey and Israel should resume full diplomatic relations or there may be disastrous unseen consequences.

Turkey’s reluctance to comply by the recommendations of the report is unfortunate, the representative body of European Jewish communities said, and is not helpful towards their efforts towards membership of the European Union. ‘

Official: Israel military attache to stay in Turkey
Exporters fear losing Turkish market

Flashback to 2004, and US racist interpretation of Erdogan’s liberalisation of Turkey :

‘But the Turkish military has justifiably expressed worries over the AKP’s power grab and its implications for the direction of Turkish foreign policy.

The effects of this erosion of power are already being felt. Turkey’s military establishment, the traditional guardian of Mustafa Kemal Attaturk’s secularist legacy, has long been the main driver of strategic ties with Jerusalem. Its progressive loss of control over the country’s security policy has therefore called into question the durability of Israel’s most important regional alliance. ‘

UPDATE 5

Report: Turkey seeking strategic alliance with Egypt

The two are due to sign a strategic cooperation agreement concerning military, diplomatic, and economic issues.

The moves comes as the crisis in Israel-Turkey relations deepened after the UN-commissioned report on the 2010 Gaza flotilla raid was leaked to the New York Times, foiling a last-ditch effort to patch up relations between the two countries.

Meanwhile, following the expulsion of the Israeli envoy from Turkey, Egyptians called on their government to follow in Turkey’s footsteps, Al Jazeera reported on Sunday, and expel the Israeli envoy in Cairo, as well as alter the Camp David Accords to allow more Egyptian forces in the Sinai Peninsula.

OIC, Arab League lash out at Palmer report as ‘biased’

Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Secretary-General Ekmeleddin ?hsano?lu on Saturday called on the international community to exert as much pressure as possible on Israel to lift the illegal blockade it imposes on the Palestinian civilian population in Gaza, while he expressed dismay at the UN report on the raid that said Israel’s naval blockade of Gaza was a legal security measure. ?hsano?lu also voiced support for Turkey’s reaction to the report, apparently lending support to Turkey’s expulsion of Israel’s ambassador and the severing of military ties with Israel.

The OIC chief said he believed the UN Panel of Inquiry’s report “failed to reflect an objective and unbiased position, as it considered the Israeli blockade of Gaza legal and appropriate.”

“The OIC cannot accept any report that would whitewash Israel’s attack on the humanitarian flotilla and condone Israel’s illegal blockade against the Palestinian civilians in the besieged Gaza Strip. The Israeli blockade on Gaza is an unjustified collective punishment conducted illegally by an occupying power. Israel should be compelled to lift this embargo and be held accountable for all its illegal actions,” ?hsano?lu said, calling once again for an “objective and even-handed” probe into the flotilla incident.

Dr. Mutaz M. Qafisheh: Palmer Report: manifestly ill-founded and a shame on the UN

Davugotlu: flotilla issue is wider than Israel and Turkey ‘an issue between Israel and international law and ethics and the international community.’

The meeting on Saturday gathered together 27 ministers from EU member countries, as well as their counterparts from Iceland, Turkey, Croatia, Montenegro and Macedonia, all nations aspiring to join the bloc, in the Baltic Sea resort of Sopot, Poland.Davuto?lu was the last minister to take the stage, where he answered questions apparently prompted by his announcement Friday in Ankara that Turkey has downgraded its diplomatic ties with Israel to the level of second secretary, and giving the Israeli ambassador and other high-level diplomats until Wednesday to leave the country.

In other measures against Israel, Turkey suspended military agreements, promised to back legal suits brought against Israel by the families of the raid victims, and vowed to take steps to ensure that freedom to navigate is maintained in the eastern Mediterranean.

Speaking with Today’s Zaman late on Saturday en route from Sopot to Turkey, Davuto?lu said he first explained to the assembled ministers how the situation in the eastern Mediterranean has been prone to escalating tensions due, to the unresolved Cyprus conflict and the ongoing crisis in Syria. “I brought up the issue of the overall dynamics in the eastern Mediterranean. I noted that everyone should be careful, and told them about the Israel issue. Everyone came up to me and asked if there is anything they can do about it. They agree that Turkey is right, and they advise us to ease up the tension. I told them that it is an issue in its own right for us, with or without the Arab Spring or the Middle East conflict. When the incident happened a year ago, there was no Arab Spring. It is about principles for us. Our people were murdered by an army outside of combat conditions,” Davuto?lu told Today’s Zaman.

I think recent Israeli governments have failed to understand the dynamics, actors and policies essential to the “new Turkey.” Turkey is no longer a country ruled by its military, which suppressed different points of view on domestic as well as foreign policy matters. Any state that wishes to be a friend of Turkey should first win the support and sympathy of its people
Yigal Palmor lies about the 3 Turkish demands, which have been consistent since Israel’s flotilla crimes
Turkey’s narrow escape from the wrath of Palmer and Uribe
Irony: Dozens of Israelis questioned at length upon landing in Turkey (another Ravid story)
Palmer Panel Needs Little Common Sense
The United States and Ergenekon “Deep State” in Turkey
Turkey’s Role in Post-Revolutionary Middle East
Thus Spoke the Turkish People: 2011 Election and Its Aftermath

UPDATE 4

Flimsy analysis trivialising Turkey’s moves as populist. Could become the new hasbara.

‘But Turkey’s demand that Israel apologize, compensate the victims and lift the Gaza blockade is rooted primarily in Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s obligation to his electorate. It has become a common, uniting, national denominator, an integral part of Turkey’s national prestige and its domestic policy.’

A subtle form of whitewash: the Palmer report on Israel’s attack on the flotilla
Turkey to take Israel to ICJ T

he UN report concluded that the blockade was “a legitimate security measure in order to prevent weapons entering Gaza by sea”.

Davutoglu said Turkey did not accept that conclusion, noting that it contradicted the UN Human Rights Council’s findings.

“We will start the application process to International Court of Justice within the next week, for an investigation into what the Gaza blockade really is,” Davutoglu told TRT news channel.

Turkey to challenge Gaza blockade

Huwaida Arraf describes the divergence in Greece and Turkey policy re participation in the recent flotilla:

‘But the country that was—that really cooperated with Israel—and it was a shock and quite sad—was Greece. And it did—we did learn that it came under a lot of political and economic pressure also because of the economic situation that they’re in. But they did impose restrictions and did not let our boats leave. So it really became complicit in Israel’s blockade. And we are challenging that on different levels.

Turkey itself didn’t really. It did communicate to us and to our Turkish partners that it might not be helpful at this time, but what happened—but the Turkish organization IHH remained fully a part of the flotilla. The Mavi Marmara was not able to go, because it was not physically, mechanically ready to go. In fact, up until the date that we were supposed to launch, they still had people working to meet all of the guidelines for being certified to go into international waters on the kind of mission that we wanted it to. So we knew—at a point, we realized it wasn’t going to be ready, and we took that boat out of the equation. But the Turks remained fully a part of the organizing. And in fact, we were going to launch one boat from Turkey. One of the boats—it was the Irish ship—was located in Turkey, but it was sabotaged by, we believe, Israeli agents and was not able to launch. So, they didn’t really place any barriers, certainly not like Greece did.’

According to Norman Finkelstein:

“This report does not claim that they were looking for a confrontation. It holds them morally culpable for trying to cast publicity on an illegal and inhumane blockade. With the Israelis, at least we’re in the same moral universe, and it’s a question of fact. What was the intent of these commandos—excuse me, what was the intent of the activists? Was it to get a confrontation, or was it to cast humanitarian—cast light on what’s happening? But with this report, we’ve entered a new moral universe. They are actually saying that to cast light on an illegal and inhumane blockade is a morally sinister act.


Then there’s the other side of the equation. There is not one word, one syllable, on how many Gazans have perished as a result of Israeli attacks. It’s not 25. It’s not 250. It’s at least at an order of magnitude of 2,500. We’re not just talking about the 1,400 Palestinians who were killed in Operation Cast Lead. Israel always has operations in Gaza, has very fancy names—Operation Summer Rains, Operation Autumn Clouds, Operation Hot Winter, Operation Rainbow. All of it vanishes from this report. The only people who have suffered deaths in Gaza due to armed hostilities are Israelis.

Now, let’s say it’s true. Fair enough. They have a right to impose a naval blockade to prevent weapons from going to Gaza, for security reasons. Don’t the people of Gaza have the right to impose a military blockade on Israel, to prevent weapons from going to Israel? You can’t even raise that question. It’s beyond their comprehension. In fact, the irony is, that’s the law. The law is, as Amnesty International pointed out in its report “Fueling Conflict,” under international law and domestic American law, it’s illegal to transfer weapons to any country or—any state or non-state party which is a consistent violator of human rights. So, if that commission, the Palmer Commission, named after, you know, the former New Zealand president, if they had any integrity, they would have said, OK, Israel has the right to impose a blockade on Gaza, and the international community” — because this is what Amnesty said. Amnesty says the international community has an obligation—that’s what they said—to impose an arms embargo on Israel, as well, because it’s a consistent violator of human rights.

It was a complete spit in the face of the Turks, what this report said.

So I think, from a moral point of view, it was a disgrace. But from a political point of view, it will probably end up helping the Palestinians. You have to remember the whole point of the report. It described the killing of the nine members of the—on the—passengers on the Mavi Marmara. You know the phrase they used? It was a “major irritant” to diplomatic relations. Killing nine people is an “irritant.” And they said, “We have to get over this irritant, so that Israel and Turkey can restore diplomatic relations.” That’s their moral level.

UPDATE 3

The real reasons Turkey stopped the Mavi Marmara sailing to Gaza last June

One calculation Turkey certainly would have had time to consider is the price it might pay in terms of retaliation from the United States, Israel’s protector and patron. Turkey, unlike Israel, is a formal ally of the United States, a member of NATO, and thus has a mutual defense pact with the United States.

The Turkish government must have concluded that it can withstand whatever wrath the United States might mete out, especially since the US still feels it needs Turkey to help maintain its faltering hegemony in the region.

On the same day it announced sanctions on Israel, Turkey also revealed that it had reached agreement to host radar installations as part of the American-sponsored and conceived NATO “missile defense” program.

Press reports indicate that as part of the deal, the US acceeded to a Turkish demand that data from the Turkish-hosted radars not be shared with Israel.

Turkey, it turns out, is still of more practical benefit to US regional hegemony than Israel, which is increasingly a strategic and political burden to the United States.

According to AP:

Turkey is preparing to challenge Israel’s blockade on Gaza at the International Court of Justice.

“What is binding is the International Court of Justice,” Davutoglu said. “This is what we are saying: let the International Court of Justice decide.”

UPDATE 2

Another reason the US demurs to Turkey – the Incirlik air base, with 5000 US airmen is.gd/MqlFVA
Yet another reason why the US is fond of Turkey – the Nabucco pipeline is.gd/iA4Znb
Further, Turkey is a formal ally of the US, unlike Israel, which is just a ‘special friend’
Yet another reason why the US needs Turkey – TAI supply to Northrop Grumman of F35 parts is.gd/f32O5k
Turkey is fully integrated into US hegemony as projector of US power & facilitator of resources
Flashback to June 2010 in EI ‘After the Flotilla, will Turkey emerge as a force for Palestinian rights?’ is.gd/2fxChq

Hamas Welcomes Turkish Decision To Expel Israeli Ambassador
Turkey Expels Israeli Ambassador, Ends Military Cooperation
Pro-zionist Hurriyet quotes unnamed ‘Turkish diplomats’ :

Turkish diplomats told the Hürriyet Daily News that the Turkish Navy will be more visible in the eastern Mediterranean through regular patrolling in international waters. “A more aggressive strategy will be pursued. Israel will no longer be able to exercise its bullying practices freely,” one said.

UN Report on Israel’s Flotilla Massacre: Facts and Fallacies
Israel forms team to fight lawsuits over flotilla attack
Palestinian factions back Turkey for expelling Israel envoy
Turkey downgrades diplomatic ties with Israel after UN report leak

‘Dubbing Israel’s current stance “a position devoid of strategy,” Gül spoke to the media on Friday hours after Ankara announced the sanctions to be imposed on Israel due to the country’s refusal to comply with Turkish demands for compensation, an apology and the lifting of the Gaza blockade’.

‘The country has demanded an apology and compensation from Israel, as well as the removal of the Gaza blockade, before the countries can finally normalize their relations. The report, made public by media outlets on Thursday, revealed that it considered the Israeli navy’s blockade of Gaza a legal action, while deeming the Israeli interference “unreasonable killing” of civilians; however, it merely suggested that the country pay compensation to the families of the deceased activists slain on the ship. The report was initially set to be released in February, but faced multiple delays meant to give the countries an opportunity to come to an agreement without the disruption the findings may cause.

“The requests for the delays came from Israel every single time,” Davutoglu said in a press conference on Friday, where he explained that Israel needed the extensions to sort out the deadlock in the Israeli cabinet. “We have held four sessions with Israeli officials to come to an agreement,” the foreign minister said and noted that some of the sessions yielded results agreeable to both parties. “However, the agreements were delayed with the aim of reaching an internal consensus in Israel.”’

‘Outlining the course of action Turkey would take from Friday onwards, Davutoglu noted that “Turkey does not recognize the blockade Israel has over Gaza. We will ensure that the blockade is investigated in the International courts.” The minister also announced that Turkey would “help the victims of the flotilla raid in any way it can” to claim their rights, a move Israel had feared would come if they issued the apology to the country for the loss of life aboard the Mavi Marmara.

Davutoglu also indicated that “it is time for Israel to make a choice” and that true security could only be obtained with the establishment of true peace, a comment that referred to the blockade on Gaza, which Israel defends as a measure of security to block arms from reaching Hamas in Gaza.’

Holding Israeli administration “the sole responsible” for the deadlock, Davutoglu stated that Turkey would be imposing sanctions on Israel as “it is now apparent that Israel is only trying to drag the process out with its perpetual requests to delay the report.” In the sanctions announced by the foreign minister, Turkey is projected to reduce the diplomatic relations to the level of second secretaries starting Wednesday, and put a hold on all military agreements between the countries, which have been significant partners in the field, with military contracts soaring beyond $1 billion.

Top Israeli legalists believe UN’s report on deadly raid on Gaza flotilla lays possible evidentiary basis for future lawsuits against military personnel
Turkey vows to take legal action against Israelis involved in Gaza flotilla raid
Rights orgs: Gaza siege illegal, Palmer recommendations fall far short of justice

UPDATE 1

Why the Palmer-Uribe report on Israel’s flotilla attack is worthless
Turkey Expels Israeli Ambassador

Turkey says it is expelling the Israeli ambassador and cutting military ties with Israel over the country’s refusal to apologize for last year’s deadly raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla.

Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Friday Turkey is downgrading diplomatic ties to the level of second secretary and that the ambassador will leave Turkey by Wednesday.

Davutoglu also said Turkey was suspending all military agreements signed between the former allies, saying “it is time Israel pays a price.”

Related Links

Waiting for the Palmer Report : Turkey Remains Firm – a comparative analysis of media representations of the Turkish position.
Haaretz: Turkey may expel Israeli ambassador in wake of Gaza flotilla report

Unless there is an Israeli apology, “we will put Plan B into play,” Davutoglu said in a joint interview to the Thursday’s Zaman and Hurriyet dailies. He said Turkey intended to impose sanctions, “which both Israel and other international parties are aware of.”

Referring to Israel’s request for another delay in the report’s publication, he said that Ankara “cannot accept another six-month extension.”

Senior Israeli officials said Thursday that Israel would not apologize for the raid and that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had reiterated this to the U.S. administration in the past few days.

The sanctions Turkey is planning against Israel include scaling back the level of diplomatic representation in both countries from ambassador to first secretary. This means Israel’s ambassador to Turkey, Gabby Levy, and his deputy, Ella Afek, would be expelled.

Turkey is also planning a diplomatic and legal campaign against Israel in the United Nations, and will help the families of those killed and injured in the raid to file lawsuits against Israel in courts worldwide.

In addition, Ankara is threatening to halt trade between Turkey and Israel, which totals in the billions of dollars.

Davutoglu said Turkey had agreed to delay the report’s publication several times because Israel wanted to negotiate over the Turks’ demand for an apology.

“We patiently waited for Israel to decide. It seems Israel has some difficulty in making a decision,” he said.

Todays Zaman: Turkey has vowed that its demands from Israel remain unchanged and that it is powerful enough to protect rights of its citizen in a first official reaction to a leaked United Nations panel report on Mavi Marmara incident

Davutoglu reiterated that Turkey’s position regarding Israeli lethal raid into Mavi Marmara ship has been very clear since May 31 last year and vowed that Turkey is powerful enough to protect rights of its citizens “no matter who says what.”

Turkish foreign minister also added that there are many things in the report that make Israeli side uncomfortable. Davutoglu downplayed the importance of report by suggesting that more important is what Israel did not realize with respect to Turkey’s demands.

Davutoglu said Turkey’s demands – official apology, compensation to families of the victims and lifting Gaza blockade – firmly remain in place and that whatever the report finds, Israel did not meet Turkey’s demands.

The foreign minister said his “comprehensive statement” on the issue will largely focus on Israel’s failure to meet the demands of Turkey rather than the report itself.

Davutoglu told Today’s Zaman in an interview on Wednesday that the last chance for Israel to extend an apology of the lethal Israeli raid is the date when the UN report is released. He said Turkey will do whatever is required if Israel does not extend apology by Friday.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan stated on July 23 that Turkey now intends to move on to “Plan B” with respect to Israeli apology conundrum, which will include a campaign against Israel to be carried out at UN institutions, legal action against senior Israeli figures in European courts, and military cooperation between Turkey and Israel being put on hold.

The total estimated value of the current military contracts that Turkey has awarded to Israeli companies amounts to $1.8 billion. This figure comprises a significant amount of the two nations’ total annual trade volume of $2.6 billion. Turkey had cancelled dozens of military agreements, war games and military projects with Israel following the lethal Israeli raid of the Mavi Marmara in May of last year.

Davutoglu: No more delays for UN report on Israel

Highlighting Turkey’s determination to switch to the so-called Plan B, Davuto?lu said: “We have been told that there has been a consensus, including an apology and other issues, which means we have made progress in the negotiations. But when it came to the final move, Israel always takes a step back at the last minute because of debates among its coalition.”

“Turkey will be imposing sanctions that are well known by Israel and some other international parties,” Davuto?lu firmly noted as he stated that Turkey is determined in its clear stance and ready to act accordingly.

Uribe’s appointment to flotilla probe guarantees its failure

Desperate Danny to Clinton: ‘Declare Turkey a terror-supporting state’

“Turkey has gotten closer to Iran and constitutes a direct continuation of the axis of evil. The government in Washington must answer the Turkish problem before it is too late,” Danon wrote, the Jerusalem Post reported.

The Israeli official called for economic and diplomatic sanctions against Turkey until Ankara changes its ways and abandons what he said “the way of terror.”

“The Turks have crossed the line. They supported the flotilla, they support terror and they dare to ask Israel to apologize to them,” Danon said.

Independent journalists dismantling Israel’s hold on media narrative
UN calls Israeli raid on flotilla ‘excessive’

SETTLER ATTACK DOGS IN THE WEST BANK

In preparation for the Palestinian fakestatehood bid, Kahanist illegal settlers in the West Bank are readying their trained hounds to go for the throat.

Palestine / Israel Links

Protests did not breach law: ACCC
Blow to Australian ziolobby: ACCC decides against invoking secondary boycott penalties for BDS
Idf Plans Harsher Methods With West Bank Demonstrations

COMMENT: Less violent demonstrations are likely to stymie the IDF. As MOD Pol-Mil chief Amos Gilad told USG interlocutors recently, “we don’t do Gandhi very well.”

Israel may seek amendment of peace treaty with Egypt, says report

Other Links

Fears for Egyptian blogger on hunger strike in jail

Australia Links

Why the Murdoch empire in Australia threatens democracy
THE Tenterfield Shire Council has apologised to the Aboriginal people of the shire for “hurtful or offensive comments” made during debate about raising the Aboriginal flag

2 comments to Palmer Report Release : Turkey Still Adamant