A perfect example of non-violent resistance...all states should start taking more action like Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions , all non-violent tools in the world's toolbox to stop the onslaught in Gaza and bring the 41-year Israeli occupation tumbling down like Apartheid before it.
International Herald Tribune
Turkish PM: Israel should be barred from UN
The Associated Press
Friday, January 16, 2009
ANKARA, Turkey: Turkey's prime minister on Friday said Israel should be barred from the United Nations while it ignores the body's calls to stop fighting in Gaza.
"How is such a country, which totally ignores and does not implement resolutions of the U.N. Security Council, allowed to enter through the gates of the UN (headquarters)?" Recep Tayyip Erdogan said.
Erdogan's comments reflected a growing anger in Turkey, Israel's best friend in the Muslim world, over Israel's Gaza operation.
He spoke before U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was due to arrive in Ankara to discuss the conflict. Ban is on a weeklong trip to the region to promote a truce after both sides ignored a U.N. resolution demanding an immediate cease-fire.
"The U.N. building in Gaza was hit while the U.N. secretary-general was in Israel," Erdogan said. "This is an open challenge to the world, teasing the world."
Israel infuriated the U.N. Thursday when it shelled the world body's headquarters in Gaza City, where hundreds of Gazans were seeking cover from the fighting among food and supplies meant for refugees. The destruction added to what aid groups say is a humanitarian crisis in Gaza and increased tensions between Israel and the international community even as diplomats engaged in cease-fire talks.
Erdogan said the Islamic militant group Hamas does not have specifically military installations or headquarters in Gaza, as alleged by Israel, and that civilians were becoming victims of attacks on hospitals and mosques. In an anti-Israel demonstration in Istanbul after Friday prayers, around 1,500 pro-Islamic protesters chanted "We're all soldiers of Hamas!"
"I want to call on the entire world; don't turn a blind eye to this savagery, don't be a spectator to this massacre because those who remain silent will become a party to this shame," Erdogan said. "Who can justify bombing young people, elderly, women and even children."
Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor rebuffed Erdogan's harsh criticism.
"Maybe if Turkey had voted more with Israel at the U.N. and expressed its anger when Hamas was firing rockets indiscriminately on Israeli civilians, it could have contributed more to bringing peace to southern Israel and Gaza" than by making such statements, Palmor said.
Turkey's President Abdullah Gul on Friday renewed calls for an immediate cease-fire and also urged U.S. President-elect Barack Obama to focus on a comprehensive, long-lasting and fair solution once in office.
Copyright © 2009 The International Herald Tribune | www.iht.com
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