Erdogan Denounces Israeli Settlers as Key Obstacle to Israeli-Palestinian Peace

Last Updated on March 6, 2024 11:59 am

In a press conference with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pinpointed Israeli settlers as a major impediment to resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Erdogan, a staunch supporter of the Palestinian cause, highlighted the actions of what he referred to as “usurpers” among the settlers, accusing them of invading and appropriating land that rightfully belongs to Palestinians.

During the joint statement, Erdogan also advocated for unrestricted access to the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem during the upcoming Ramadan, set to begin on March 10 or 11. He condemned the demands by radical Israeli politicians to limit the entry of Muslims, deeming such restrictions as “totally absurd” with potentially serious consequences.

President Abbas echoed concerns about extremist settlers targeting Al-Aqsa, emphasizing the significance of the upcoming Ramadan period. Israel, in response, announced its intention to permit a number of Muslim worshippers to access the Al-Aqsa mosque during the first week of Ramadan, with ongoing assessments of the situation.

The Al-Aqsa mosque compound, known as Temple Mount to Jews, holds deep religious significance for both Jews and Muslims. As tensions persist, the statements from Erdogan and Abbas underscore the ongoing challenges in the region, particularly amid Israel’s military campaign in the Gaza Strip and debates over access to holy sites during Ramadan.

President Abbas is currently in Turkey for discussions on the Gaza war and efforts towards reconciliation between Palestinian factions. The visit further emphasizes the complex dynamics and diplomatic maneuvers surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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