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Classical_Liberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-04 01:46 PM
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Ties between Turkey, Israel grow strained
Ties between Turkey, Israel grow strained
Middle Eastern allies disagree over Israel's handling of Palestinians, reports of training Kurdish commandos

By Catherine Collins
Special to the Tribune
Published July 18, 2004

ISTANBUL -- When Israel's deputy prime minister arrived in Turkey last week on a fence-mending mission, he found that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan was away on vacation.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry said Erdogan's holiday had been planned long before the visit. Yet it came at a time when relations between the two allies have frayed over Israel's actions against Palestinians and published reports alleging that Israeli military officers are training Kurdish commandos who want to establish an independent nation.

As the only secular democracies in the Middle East, Turkey and Israel have forged a friendship of mutual need and support. Both define themselves as more Western--culturally, politically and economically--than Middle Eastern.

Turkey was the first Muslim-majority country to recognize Israel in 1948, and ties between the two countries have blossomed in recent years.

But in recent weeks Erdogan has been sharply critical of Israel's tactics against the Palestinians. He condemned the Sharon government's policies as "inhumane" and accused Israel of "state-sponsored terrorism.".....

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phantom power Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-19-04 01:50 PM
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1. I wonder if Sharon and Bush have some kind of side-bet going
whoever can completely alienate their country first wins.
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