News / Middle East

Kerry Trip Focuses on Israel-Turkey Relations

Kerry Trip Focuses on Israel-Turkey Relationsi
X
April 05, 2013 6:21 PM
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is traveling to the Middle East with planned stops in Istanbul along with Jerusalem and Ramallah. The trip is designed to solidify progress after U.S. President Barack Obama’s recent visit to the region ended a Turkish-Israeli diplomatic deadlock. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports from Washington.

Kerry Trip Focuses on Israel-Turkey Relations

Meredith Buel

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry heads to the Middle East Saturday with planned stops in Istanbul along with Jerusalem and Ramallah. The trip is designed to solidify progress after U.S. President Barack Obama’s recent visit to the region ended a Turkish-Israeli diplomatic deadlock.
 

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently apologized to Turkey for a deadly 2010 maritime commando raid in a gesture brokered by President Obama designed to restore diplomatic relations between the two strategic U.S. allies.


The bilateral relationship severely deteriorated after nine Turkish activists were killed during an Israeli attack on a Turkish flotilla bound for Gaza.


Turkey accepted the apology.


President Obama hailed the breakthrough. "I have long said that it is in both the interest of Israel and Turkey to restore normal relations between two countries that have historically had good ties," Obama said.


Kerry is expected to continue efforts to improve relations between Ankara and Israel in a trip to both nations.


"Given the situation in the region right now, given Turkey’s problems with Iraq, with Syria and with Iran and given Israel’s very, very difficult situation with Iran and generally in the Arab Spring, so therefore this is a very important strategic step," said James Jeffrey, a former U.S. ambassador to Turkey who is now a visiting fellow with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.


While in Istanbul, Kerry will also discuss the civil war in Syria.


Turkey, which shares a 900-kilometer border with Syria, is a crucial nation backing the Syrian opposition.


"This is a very, very good development, his going back to the region. It is very good that he is bringing Turkey in. It is not just Syria. It is also Iraq, and it is Iran. These are very existential issues for Turkey, and we need to be better coordinated," Jeffrey said.


Kerry will also visit Jerusalem and Ramallah as the Obama administration tries to end the stalemate over peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.


The Palestinians want a halt to the construction of Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank, while Israel says talks should resume without preconditions.


"The Secretary and the President have both said there is an urgent window for the parties to come back to the table, that we are prepared to support them in that, but we can’t do more than they’re willing to do themselves," said State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland.


Palestinian protesters have been clashing with Israeli security forces over the recent deaths of two demonstrators and the issue of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails - issues likely to be raised by Palestinian leaders during Kerry's visit.

You May Like

Scotland Vote Raises Questions of International Law

Experts say self-determination, as defined and protected by international law, confined narrowly to independence movements in process of de-colonization More

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

Conservationists hail ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015 More

Annual Military Exercise Takes on New Meaning for Ukraine Troops

Troops from 15 nations participating in annual event, 'Rapid Trident' in western Ukraine More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Old Turkish Soldier from: Turkey
April 06, 2013 7:22 PM
I agree with Dr. Hanz that Military has great respect for Israel. and that Mavi Marmara terrorists and hooligans were helped by the Turkish Islamic government and not by the Turkish military. however, the Islamic Gülen movement is in structure like the Nazi party Baath Party like the Muslim Brotherhood terrorist organization and they are killing all dissenters in the Military - ALL !! so, I don't think the military is strong enough to take over Government in Turkey. everybody is afraid EVERYBODY... !!! and we all know what comes next - civil war


by: Steve McCullen from: Ireland
April 06, 2013 11:43 AM
A military takeover in Turkey will be a very welcomed news to many in Europe. not only will it bring forth a more coherent geopolitical orientation, draw Turkey away from the revolting influence of Saudi Arabia and Qatar on Turkey Islamist fanatics, but it will pull back Turkey's debacle in Syria.


by: Barney Rubble
April 06, 2013 4:37 AM
"while Israel says talks should resume without preconditions."
really ? Israel is happy for talks to carry out with Palestinians who fire rockets and do not accept in advance Israel's claim to statehood ?
I think not - you probably meant Israel wants talks with concurrent hoovering up of the remains of Palestine's land.


by: Dr. Hanz from: Germany
April 05, 2013 8:29 PM
the suppression of Turkey military command by Erdogan has worried many in the EU, since they are the guardians of secular Turkish tradition. However as Turkey reverted to extreme Islamism, the consensus in Europe is that the US should not facilitate "improved" relation between Turkey and Israel. Turkey's economy is deteriorating at a faster rate than any reversal of the global economy is predicted to reverse... we all know that the Turkish military establishment has very strong relations with Israel... and we believe they will eventually take over the Islamist government in Ankara.

In Response

by: Frank Romano from: usa
April 06, 2013 11:16 AM
There is a major flaw in the Dr’s thinking the military may have close ties with Israel but so did the Military in Egypt it took the Muslim Brotherhood a short period of time to replace the Generals who might have complained. The Islamics control with fear wherever they spawn they conquer

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctionsi
X
September 18, 2014 2:28 AM
A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.
Video

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

China says its has sentenced three men to death and one woman to life in prison for a deadly knife attack in March that left more than 30 dead and 140 injured. Beijing says Muslim militants from China's restive western region of Xinjiang carried out the attacks. Now, more than six months after the incident, residents in the city are still coping with the aftermath. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Kunming.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid