Over the "humanitarian catastrophe" in Gaza, Turkey stops trading with Israel.



,- Announcing the suspension of all trade with Israel, Turkey cited the "worsening humanitarian tragedy" in Gaza. These steps, the Turkish commerce ministry said, would stay in place until Israel permits a "uninterrupted and sufficient flow" of aid into the beleaguered area.

Nearly $7 billion in trade between Turkey and Israel was recorded in the previous year. This choice is made in the middle of growing hostilities brought on by Israel's offensive in Gaza, which has been denounced by the whole world.

There have been tense ties between Turkey and Israel for many years, made worse by sporadic outbursts. An other chapter in this turbulent relationship has been opened with the latest trade restriction.

One significant element of Turkey's foreign policy has been its backing of the Palestinian struggle, especially Hamas in Gaza. This unfailing backing is motivated by both strategic and ideological factors and has long historical roots.

Ten Turkish activists died in 2010 when Israeli soldiers halted a Turkish charity ship headed for Gaza, causing a breach between Turkey and Israel. Tensions between the two countries were increased by Turkey's later removal of the Israeli ambassador and the break of diplomatic relations.

Even if ties somewhat improved in 2016, they deteriorated once more in 2018 after deadly fighting along the Gaza-Israel border. President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan has criticised Israel's activities outspokenly, charging the Israeli government with violating human rights and employing excessive force.

The recent Hamas strikes on Israel have heightened Erdogan's rhetoric and further strained ties between the two nations. Israeli authorities have harshly criticised him for his comparison of Israeli acts to those of Hitler, accusing him of dishonesty and double standards.

With accounts of widespread starvation and misery among the Palestinian populace, the humanitarian situation in Gaza has also been contentious. An approaching famine in northern Gaza has been warned about by the UN, which blames Israeli limitations on supply and help.

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Denying any intentional restriction of assistance supplies, Israel has blamed Hamas for squandering funds and making the humanitarian situation worse. International pressure has grown on Israel, though, to relax its rules and let the unhindered delivery of humanitarian supplies into Gaza.

Although the world community has called for a stop to the hostilities, attempts to mediate a truce between Israel and Hamas have so far been fruitless. A plan including a brief ceasefire and a prisoner swap has been put out by the US and other mediators; Hamas has not yet replied.

Turkey, meantime, makes it quite evident that it supports the Palestinian cause and denounces Israel's activities in Gaza by suspending commerce with the country. The action might have wider effects for regional stability and is probably going to exacerbate tensions between the two nations.

Finally, the fact that Turkey has stopped doing business with Israel highlights the growing distance between the two nations over the Gaza War. The political unrest and humanitarian catastrophe in the area have made things worse, which has raised questions about the chances of Middle Eastern peace and stability.

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