Israel “Hopeful” Turkey Will Reconcile Soon; Hamas “Remains Unreformed”


dore goldIsraeli Foreign Ministry Director-General Dore Gold said Thursday he is “hopeful that in the not-too-distant future Israel and Turkey will find a way to reestablish their relationship.”

Gold held secret talks in Rome in June with his Turkish counterpart, Feridun Sinirlioglu. “The strategic environment around Turkey is much more complicated than it was two or three years ago, with the rise of ISIS as a challenge to Turkey, not just Syria, and the growth of Iranian power, which is not just a problem for Israel, but for Turkey as well,” Gold said. “I think countries ultimately operate according to their interests, and I think Turkey and Israel do have important converging interests.”

Gold dismissed reports of a long-term Hamas-Israel deal, saying Hamas “remains unreformed” and Israel “is not negotiating with it.” Hamas “remains a dangerous organization committed to Israel’s destruction, and is also equipping itself for future rounds of warfare.” Over the past decade there have been claims that “Hamas is on the verge of becoming a political organization with whom you can engage diplomatically….Recent events show that is simply not true.

“Hamas is now the ally of the Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis jihadi organization in northern Sinai, which is part of the ISIS network….You can’t have Hamas as a movement about to become a moderate partner for negotiations and at the same time have Hamas fully engaged with one of the most dangerous jihadi organizations.”

{ Israel News Bureau}