Turkey, ‘Israel’ negotiate gas transportation to Europe: Spokesperson

Delegations from Turkey and the Israeli occupation are scheduled to hold a meeting on transporting gas to the European Union in October.

  • Turkey,
    Turkey and the Israeli occupation have negotiated the transport of gas to the European Union (Blumberg)

Turkish Presidential Spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said on Friday that Turkey and the Israeli occupation had been negotiating how to transport gas to the European Union, with delegations from both sides scheduled to meet on the subject in October.

Gas from the eastern Mediterranean could become an alternative to Russian supplies for the EU, Kalin said in May, adding that Ankara is ready to take part in the process.

“These negotiations [between Turkey and the Israeli occupation] are underway, as far as I know, the next meeting will be in October,” Kalin told reporters when asked the relevant question.

The EU has long been looking for alternatives to Russian natural gas, given its pledge to end dependency on Russian energy supplies after the war in Ukraine.

The bloc has already approved seven packages of sanctions against Moscow, including a phased phase-out of Russian oil.

“Israel” is violating Lebanon’s rights

This comes as the Israeli occupation and Lebanon are conducting indirect negotiations for the demarcation of the sea border under US mediation.

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“Israel” has already set up an oil rig in the disputed Karish gas field to try to extract gas amid an energy crisis in Europe, in complete violation of Lebanon’s rights.

But Hezbollah Secretary-General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah had warned: “If Lebanon does not get the rights demanded by the Lebanese state, we are headed for an escalation, whether the nuclear deal is signed or not.”

Sayyed Nasrallah emphasized that “the focus in Lebanon must be on Karish and the Lebanese [maritime] border, as well as the US mediator who still wastes time under time pressure.”

On August 9, the Lebanese leader warned that any attempt to plunder Lebanon’s wealth would be thwarted and indicated that the party was awaiting the Israeli enemy’s response to Lebanon’s demands regarding the demarcation of the border.

Read more: The EU may pass further sanctions against Russia in October

Erdogan ignores Palestine, discusses restoring relations with Lapid

Kalin’s comments come after Israeli Occupation Minister Yair Lapid met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in New York on Tuesday on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly to advocate for restoring ties between “Tel Aviv” and Ankara.

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The meeting came just over a month after a phone call between the two, during which it was agreed to move forward with fully restoring ties.

Lapid welcomed the appointment of both Turkish and Israeli envoys, who have so far been at the chargé d’affaires level, according to a statement from his office.

He particularly highlighted the appointment of “Israel’s” chargé d’affaires Irit Lilian as ambassador to Ankara, his office said. Turkey has yet to announce who will be its ambassador to Tel Aviv.

While recent Israeli aggression and daily attacks on Palestinians have been ignored, Lapid and Erdogan’s discussions have focused on security in “Israel” and abroad, the occupation’s prime minister’s office said.

Israeli flights to Turkey, which had been halted, have recently resumed. According to Lapid’s office, this development would “add value” to tourism for both sides.

Erdogan visits “Israel”

Notably, on Monday Erdogan told a group of Jewish leaders in New York that he plans to visit “Israel.” He also shared his view that “anti-Semitism is a crime against humanity”.

Erdogan has not visited “Israel” since 2005, when he was Turkey’s prime minister.

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The Turkish President highlighted alleged hate crimes against Israelis but did not address the ongoing Israeli crimes against Palestinians committed by the IOF and illegal Israeli settlers.

Relations between Ankara and “Tel Aviv” hit rock bottom after Israeli occupation commandos stormed the Mavi Marmara ship carrying humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip in 2010, resulting in the deaths of nine Turks.

After a reconciliation deal in 2016, tensions between the two sides escalated again when both sides exchanged departing ambassadors in 2018 after the IOF killed Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip and after the US moved its embassy to occupied Al-Quds.

In recent months, however, Israeli-Turkish relations have warmed up. In March, Israeli occupation president Isaac Herzog visited Ankara and met with Erdogan, and in August Turkey and “Israel” agreed to appoint each other’s ambassadors and restore full diplomatic relations.

A further step in the rapprochement between the two sides was marked in early September by a Turkish warship that docked at the port of Haifa in occupied Palestine for the first time in 12 years as part of a mission for NATO forces in the region.

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