Turkey will cut ties with Israel unless it receives an apology over a deadly Israeli raid on a Turkish aid ship bound for Gaza, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu was quoted as saying on Monday.
"Israel has three paths ahead: It either apologises, or accepts the findings from an international commission investigating the raid, or Turkey will cut off ties," Davutoglu told Hurriyet newspaper.
Turkey has said several times it wants Israel to apologise over the deadly May 31 raid, pay compensation, agree to a U.N. inquiry into the killings and lift the siege on the 1.6 million Palestinians living in Gaza Strip.
Turkey has said before it was reviewing ties with the Jewish state. But Davutoglu's words are the first time Ankara has explicitly said it will sever ties unless its demands are met.
Israel has opened its internal inquiry after rejecting UN proposal on international probe, that Turkey also demands.
Davutoglu met Israel's Trade and Industry Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer last week in Brussels in talks aimed at mending fences. Turkey said then it had told Israel what it should do to repair ties.
"The messages conveyed to Ben-Eliezer have reached the Israeli government. We will not wait forever for an answer," Davutoglu told Hurriyet's Monday edition.
"It will be enough if their own commission rules that the raid was unfair and they apologise in line with the commission's verdict, but we have to see the verdict first."
Nine Turkish activists were brutally killed when Israeli commandos raided the Turkish-flagged ship Mavi Marmara on May 31, a relief aid flotilla headed for Israeli-blockaded Gaza.
Turkey withdrew its ambassador to Israel, cancelled joint military operations and banned Israeli military aircraft from Turkish airspace after the killings.
The United States wants Israel and Turkey to mend ties. President Barack Obama is due to meet Israel's Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington on Tuesday.
Related news reports:Güncelleme Tarihi: 05 Temmuz 2010, 12:50