Post by Earl Evleth
Reminds of the Kingston trio's song on hate (from the 1950s)
I forgot the Israelis and the Turks
Turkey envoy: Israel's shameful display is worst I've ever seen
By Haaretz Service
The Turkish Foreign Ministry on Tuesday summoned Israeli Ambassador Gaby
Levy for clarification, a day after the foreign ministry in Jerusalem called
in Ankara's envoy to Israel for what the latter described to Army Radio as
the most shameful experience of his 35-year career.
Israel's Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday that Deputy Foreign Minister Danny
Ayalon did not intend to humiliate Ambassador Ahmet Oguz Celikkol by seating
him in a lower chair without flag representation during their meeting.
Celikkol was called in regarding a recent Turkish television drama depicting
actors dressed as Shin Bet officers who kidnap babies.
The Foreign Ministry stressed that it had summoned the envoy and ordered
the seating arrangment to make clear that it would respond to any insult
made by the Turkish leadership.
Just three months ago, a similar diplomatic instance occurred between the
two countries after Turkey aired the controversial television drama Ayrilik
("Separation") which featured actors dressed as Israeli soldiers killing
During the meeting, Turkey's ambassador was seated in a low sofa, and facing
him, in higher chairs, were Ayalon and two other officials - an arrangement
carried out at Lieberman's orders.
A photo-op was held at the start of the meeting, during which Ayalon told
the photographers in Hebrew: "Pay attention that he is sitting in a
lower chair and we are in the higher ones, that there is only an Israeli
flag on the table and that we are not smiling."
Celikkol's associates told Army Radio on Tuesday, that the meeting with
Ayalon was the most shameful display he had seen in 35 years as a diplomat.
According to the associates, Celikkol had no idea what the topic of
conversation was to be when first seated. When the cameras left the room,
the sources said, the meeting was normal and professional.
"Had the ambassador understood Ayalon's intentions, which were only
expressed in Hebrew, he would have responded in kind," the source told Army
Israeli officials: Liberman wants to keep tense ties with Turkey
Meanwhile, ministry sources said Monday that Foreign Minister Avigdor
Lieberman was trying to stop Defense Minister Ehud Barak from visiting to
Turkey next week, in order to keep up the recent tensions between the two
Barak was scheduled to leave for Turkey on Sunday to meet with his
counterpart and the foreign minister there, in an attempt to improve
Tensions were renewed on Monday, after Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip
Erdogan declared that Israel was endangering world peace by using
exaggerated force against the Palestinians, breaching Lebanon's air space
and waters and for not revealing the details of its nuclear program.
According to Foreign Ministry sources, Lieberman is now looking to "heat
things up" before Barak's trip, so as to torpedo attempts to mend the
"We get the sense that Lieberman wants to heat things up before Barak's
visit," a senior Foreign Ministry source said. "All of the recent activities
were part of Lieberman's political agenda."
The Turkish government was expected to give a warm welcome to Barak, who
alongside Labor Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer was looking to bring the
allies' relations back to stability.
The Foreign Ministry sources surmised that Lieberman's efforts were aimed at
preventing Turkey from resuming its role as mediator in Israel's peace talks
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