Israel has been condemned harshly by many countries across the world for the killing of at least 60 Palestinians during protests that erupted against the opening of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem on May 14.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on May 14 condemned the “humanitarian tragedy” in Gaza, describing Israeli violence against Palestinian protesters as “genocide.”
“What Israel is doing is genocide, and it is not doing this genocide for the first time today. As you know, this occupation has continued since 1948,” Erdoğan said during his visit to London on May 14.
The Turkish government declared a three-day national mourning and decided to “recall its ambassadors from Tel Aviv and Washington for consultations,” Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ told reporters in Ankara following a cabinet meeting on May 14.
“Today will go down in history as Bloody Monday for Muslims and Islamic countries… The U.S. has violated United Nations Security Council decisions by opening its embassy in Jerusalem,” he added.
Turkey also summoned Israeli Ambassador to Ankara Eitan Naeh to tell him to “return to his country for a period of time,” an official told AFP on condition of anonymity.
Joint statement from three parties
The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), which has formed an alliance with the AKP, have issued a joint statement to condemn Israel.
CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has called on the AKP to withdraw Turkey’s ambassador to Israel, speaking at a parliamentary group meeting in Ankara on May 15.
Meanwhile, emergency medicine and medical equipment worth $100,000 has been delivered to Palestinians at hospitals in the Gaza Strip, officials from the Turkish Red Crescent said on May 15.
Organization of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC) member countries have been called by the term president Turkey for an extraordinary summit on May 18.
Iran said Israeli officials should be tried as war criminals over the “brutal massacre” of Gazan protesters.
Calls for an investigation
French President Emmanuel Macron condemned the “violence of the Israeli armed forces against the protesters,” while EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said “we expect all to act with utmost restraint to avoid further loss of life.”
Britain’s minister for the Middle East, Alistair Burt, acknowledged “Israel’s right to defend its borders” but also said “the large volume of live fire is extremely concerning.”
Germany has supported calls for an independent investigation into the killing of dozens of Palestinians and wounding of hundreds.
South Africa recalled its ambassador to Israel “until further notice” and Ireland summoned Israel’s ambassador to Dublin. Belgium also summoned the Israeli envoy and called for an inquiry.
The U.N. rights office said it seemed that any Palestinian protesting in Gaza, regardless of whether they pose an imminent threat, is “liable” to be killed by Israeli forces.
China called for restraint, “especially” from Israel which says that its action is necessary to stop infiltrations of the border fence and prevent the group running the blockaded Gaza Strip from carrying out violence.
The U.S. blocked the adoption of a U.N. Security Council statement that would have called for an independent probe into the violence.
U.S. President Donald Trump’s daughter Ivanka and her husband Jared Kushner, both White House aides, attended the ceremony in Jerusalem on May 14, which coincided with the 70th anniversary of the creation of Israel, a day marked by Palestinians as the Nakba, or “catastrophe,” to commemorate the more than 700,000 Palestinians who fled or were expelled in 1948.