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The Gaza War: Turkey halts trade with Israel for “violence” against Palestinians

The Gaza War: Turkey halts trade with Israel for “violence” against Palestinians

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Virendra Pandit

New Delhi: Turkey halted all trade activities with Israel because of the latter’s “non-stop violence” against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, the Turkish Trade Ministry said.

But, like Iran, Turkey also appears to be in no mood to burn its fingers by directly attacking Israel and getting entangled in a larger Middle East war.

Barring verbose threats, no Arab or Muslim nation has dared to attack Israel whose relentless destructive campaign against 2.3 million hapless Palestinians in the Gaza Strip continues since October 7, 2023, when the Hamas terrorists provoked it by invading the Jewish state, killing nearly 1,200 and taking some 250 hostages. Ever since, over 34,000 Palestinians have perished and a million were displaced and are facing starvation.

The latest move follows Turkey’s imposition of restrictions on an array of exports to Israel since last month, which Ankara said on Thursday would remain in effect until a ceasefire in Gaza is achieved, the media reported.

In a statement, the Ministry recalled that Ankara earlier restricted the export of 54 product groups to Israel in April because the “massacre, humanitarian catastrophe, and physical destruction caused by Israel continued,” and the Israeli government “ignored” international ceasefire efforts and blocked humanitarian aid, China’s Xinhua news agency reported.

“It is observed that the Israeli government continues its aggressive behavior and the humanitarian tragedy in Palestine worsens,” the Ministry said.

“In this respect, the second phase of the measures taken at the state level has been initiated and export and import transactions with Israel have been suspended for all products,” said the statement.

Turkey will strictly and decisively implement these new measures until the Israeli government allows the uninterrupted and sufficient flow of humanitarian aid to Gaza, it added.

On the other hand, the Turkish Trade Ministry is coordinating with Palestinian authorities to ensure that Palestinian people “who are forced to live under occupation” are not affected by these restrictions, the Ministry noted.

According to the Turkish Statistical Institute, trade between the two countries amounted to USD 6.8 billion in 2023, with Turkish exports accounting for 76 percent of the total.


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