Turkey blocking Israel from opening office in NATO

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen and Turkey

From Zaman:  Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has said Turkey threatened to veto Israel earlier this year in case the Jewish state establishes an office as part of NATO’s Mediterranean Dialogue initiative which Israel is a part of along with other six countries.
Davutoğlu revealed in an interview with Turkish CNN TURK broadcaster on Sunday that Turkey threatened to veto a move by Israel to open a NATO office in Brussels while Turkish officials say Turkey’s decision to veto may change according to political circumstances.

Turkey earlier vowed that it will pursue every kind of opportunity in international platforms to squeeze Israel after the ties between the two former allies badly damaged following the Mavi Marmara incident last year which left nine Turkish civilians dead.

In 1994, NATO launched an initiative to establish partnership with non-NATO member Mediterranean countries, including Israel.

Israel, through the help and coordination of the US, made an attempt to open the NATO office in Brussels earlier this year and Turkey threatened to veto Israel’s move in NATO’s foreign ministers meeting in Berlin on April 14-15. Turkish officials then said in current conditions, Turkey won’t approve Israel to open the office and veto it if Tel-Aviv officially applies.

Israel then stepped back from opening the office after Turkey’s response.

Turkish diplomatic sources told Today’s Zaman that Turkey’s decision to veto Israel is not permanent and that it could be change according to political circumstances. . . . (photo: Reuters)

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