Published: Mon, April 02, 2018
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Erdogan calls Netanyahu 'terrorist, occupier' over Gaza carnage

Erdogan calls Netanyahu 'terrorist, occupier' over Gaza carnage

"Hey Netanyahu! You are occupier".

"We are not guilty of any act of occupation", Erdogan said.

On Saturday, Turkish President Erdogan slammed Israel for the "inhumane attack".

Israel has defended the killing of 15 Palestinians during Friday's demonstration and Netanyahu tweeted that the Israeli army "will not be lectured by those who have indiscriminately bombed civilian populations for years", referring to Turkey. "Apparently this is the way they mark April Fools Day in Ankara".

Turkey began the so-called Operation Olive Branch in Afrin on January 20 to clear the northern Syrian border of the People's Protection Units (YPG), a US-backed Kurdish militant group which Ankara associates with the homegrown Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) fighting for autonomy on Turkish soil. The remarks came as a reaction to the clashes between Palestinians and Israeli soldiers on the border of Israel and the Gaza Strip.

IDF spokesman Ronen Manelis said Friday that the military faced "a violent, terrorist demonstration at six points" along the fence.

The violence broke out on Friday after tens of thousands of people in the Gaza Strip marched near the Israeli border. Hamas itself later acknowledged that five of the dead were members of its military wing.

Erdoğan said Netanyahu can not find proper worldwide support for his actions and reminded the Turkey-sponsored United Nations resolution rejecting the U.S.'s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital by a vote of 128-9.

It said there were attempts to damage the fence and break through into Israel, as well as an attempted gun attack against troops.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry fired back on Saturday against claims that Israeli forces were improperly cracking down on freedom of expression and Palestinians' right to protest, saying that Israel was simply trying to guard itself against terrorism. Israel's position has generally been that Palestinian refugees and their descendants would become citizens of a Palestinian state at the culmination of the peace process, just as Jews who fled or were forced out of Middle Eastern countries by hostile governments became citizens of Israel.

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