World Bulletin / News Desk
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Monday Israel's attack on ships carrying aid materials to Gaza was not legitimate according to international laws.
Turkey protested Israel and requested release of six ships carrying humanitarian aid for Gazan people after Israeli killed up to 19 aid activists, most of them reportedly Turkish nationals.
Israel's Channel 10 TV said 19 passengers were killed and 36 wounded in the raid. A Turkish charity said, at least 15 people were killed, most of them Turkish nationals.
Speaking to Turkey's state-run TRT TV channel, Davutoglu stressed that no country had the right to attack aid ships.
There is no country superior than international laws, Davutoglu underlined, according to Anadolu news agency.
Those Turkish citizens injured in the attack or others must be able to return back to Turkey without any conditions. We will conduct the legal procedure needed for our citizens killed in Israel's attack, Davutoglu said.
"In contact with other states"
The state and government of the Republic of Turkey will deal with this matter with all of their tools. We have been in full touch with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and President Abdullah Gul all night long. A crisis center was established in Ankara under the leadership of Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc, Davutoglu said.
We will take all necessary steps. No country can have a special treatment in this matter. We will work to defend the rights of our citizens, Davutoglu said.
"According to information we have received, there are around 20 injured people and around 10 dead. We have given the necessary instructions to our ambassador in Tel Aviv to find out about the exact number of casualties," Davutoglu said.
Even if there was only one injured person, the attack was piracy. Israel's attitute has hurt the conscience of all humanity, Davutoglu said.
We hope that Israel learns lessons from this incident. Israel's blockade on Gaza is against laws and is not legitimate, Davutoglu said.
Davutoglu said that he would travel to New York for a meeting on Israel's attack at the United Nations.
Turkey has recalled its ambassador in Israel as of Monday, Davutoglu said.
The Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) is in touch with 32 countries whose citizens were in the aid ships, Davutoglu also said.
"International legal case"
Meanhile, acting Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc said that Turkey would use its rights stemming from international law against Israeli attack on the Turkish ships carrying relief material to Gaza.
Appearing in a press conference held in Ankara Monday, Arinc said "On behalf of Turkish nation and government, we curse this inhumane attack on civilian ships carrying humanitarian relief, material staged by Israeli Air Forces".
We have decided to cancel three military exercises with Israel. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has cancelled his trip in Latin America and will arrive in Turkey around noon on Tuesday, Arinc said.
He said by attacking innocent civilians, Israel displayed to the whole world its disregard of human values.
"This attack completely violating international law, and disregarding all human concerns will leave a bloody stain on human history," said Arinc.
He said political authorities responsible for the attack will have to give account for their actions in the international arena.
Arinc said Turkey was making initiatives with Organization of the Islamic Conference, the Arab League, the European union and called on all international organizations to take action.
Arinc said all activists and volunteers onboard the the ships should be urgently returned to their countries in safety calling on Israel to return Turkish citizens and release the arrested ships at once. He also said Turkey made initiatives to bring the injured activists for treatment in Turkey.
He said Israel has been hiding the incident from the international community urging it to inform the world correctly.
Related news reports:
Israel kills Gaza activists on Turkish ship - VIDEO - PHOTOGüncelleme Tarihi: 01 Haziran 2010, 10:29