Turkey has vehemently condemned Israel's recent actions in Gaza, with a special focus on the killing of Montaser Al-Sawaf, a freelance cameraman for the Turkish news service Anadolu. Fahrettin Altun, Turkey's Communications Director, has voiced his distress over the loss of lives in what he described as a two-month-long massacre by Israel.
Loss of Lives and Freedom of Information
In his statement, Altun highlighted the deaths of 72 journalists, citing these as clear evidence of deliberate attacks on the freedom of information. He has called for immediate action from the international and media community to halt these atrocities.
Anadolu President Reacts
Anadolu's President, Serdar Karagoz, expressed his grief over the loss of journalists, including Al-Sawaf, and pledged to continue advocating for accountability under international law. He criticized the Israeli strikes for targeting not just Palestinian civilians, but also undermining Western values, international law, and human rights.
Gaza Attacks Resume
Despite international calls for a ceasefire, Israel has resumed attacks in Gaza after a week-long humanitarian pause. The resumption of these attacks has led to significant casualties among Palestinians, including over 15,000 deaths, mostly children and women, since October 7. These actions have drawn condemnation from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who labeled Israel's attacks as a 'war crime, crime against humanity' during his speech at the 2023 edition of the UN climate summit in Dubai.
The Gaza war has disrupted the delicate regional balance in the Middle East, where regional powers Turkey and Iran have historically competed for influence. While the war might bring Turkey and Iran onto the same page given their common stance toward Israel, the lingering differences between the two countries on several issues indicate that cooperation may still be elusive.