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24 Mar, 2024 13:19

Israel summons Turkish envoy after Erdogan’s ‘send Netanyahu to Allah’ remark

The president is “the last one who can speak about God” over his support for Hamas, according to the Jewish state’s foreign minister
Israel summons Turkish envoy after Erdogan’s ‘send Netanyahu to Allah’ remark

Israel's foreign minister has summoned the Turkish envoy “for a serious reprimand” over President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s verbal attack on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Diplomatic tensions between the countries have escalated since the Hamas-Israel conflict broke out last year. The Turkish leader has been among the harshest critics of Israel over the Gaza war.

In a post on X on Friday, Israel’s top diplomat said he had instructed Foreign Ministry officials “to summon the Turkish deputy ambassador to Israel” following Erdogan’s recent “threats to send PM Netanyahu to Allah.” Türkiye withdrew its ambassador from Israel last November, in protest at Israel’s bombardment of Gaza.

“You who supports [sic] the burning of babies, murderers, rapists and the mutilation of corpses by Hamas criminals, is the last one who can speak about God,” Israel Katz stated. “There is no God who will listen to those who support the atrocities and crimes against humanity committed by your barbaric Hamas friends.

Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesperson Oncu Keceli hit back, saying: “Türkiye will continue to speak the truth, and bring the indescribable persecution of the Palestinian people to the global agenda.”

“The crimes committed by Israel in Gaza over the past six months can no longer be hidden, and Israel is on trial for genocide,” the official wrote in a post on social media.

On Thursday, speaking at an election rally, Erdogan said: “We leave the person known as Netanyahu to Our Lord named Al-Qahhar,” referring to Allah by one of his 99 names. “Let our Lord Destroy him.”

The two countries have been at loggerheads since Israel declared war on Hamas in October in response to the terrorist attack by the militant group, in which around 1,200 people were killed and more than 200 taken hostage. The retaliatory bombing of Gaza and ground operation has caused the deaths of at least 32,000 people, according to the territory’s Health Ministry.

The Turkish leader has repeatedly compared the Israeli PM to Adolf Hitler, and accused Israel of committing “genocide” against Palestinians in Gaza. Israel, meanwhile, has claimed that the Turkish president ranks among the worst anti-Semites in history, due to his stance on the conflict and support for Hamas.