This weekend, several Turkish and Israeli delegations will meet in a European capital to finalize the resumption of their diplomatic relations, which had been interrupted after the Israeli attack on the Mavi Marmara.

In 2010, IHH, an association of the Turkish Muslim Brothers, had organized the “Freedom Flotilla”, claiming to bring humanitarian aid to Gaza (although the Flotilla was not [in fact] carrying the materials that has been announced). The ships had been pirated by the Israeli army in international waters, raising much concern within the international community.

After asking for an apology, Turkey settled for an international enquiry.

The current Turkish minister of Foreign Affairs, Feridun Sinirlioğlu, and Doctor Joseph Ciechanover for Israel conducted the negotiations.

The new Turkish Prime Minister, Binali Yıldırım, announced his intention to return to the policy of “zero problems” with his neighbours, a policy which had been abandoned in 2010. At the time, Turkey hoped to capitalize on the Palestinian issue to re-establish its former influence over the Arab world. However, in 6 years, the regional situation has been turned upside down. It is no longer a question of Tel-Aviv seeking to make an alliance of Non-Arab states (Turkey and Iran) in the region, (the Periphery doctrine); instead, Tel Aviv seeking to build a new regional order with Saudi Arabia and Turkey against Iran.

The two parties should announce their meeting on 26 June and resume diplomatic relations in July. It is only then that the Free Trade Agreement between the United States, Israel and Turkey, concluded in April, will be able to enter into force.

Anoosha Boralessa