Turkish parliament approves deal ending rift with Israel

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SHAFAQNA – Turkey’s parliament approved a reconciliation agreement signed with Israel in June which has brought to an end a six-year rift between the two regional powers, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said on Saturday.

Relations between the two countries crumbled after Israeli marines stormed a Turkish ship in May 2010 to enforce a naval blockade of the Hamas-run Gaza Strip, killing 10 Turks on board.

Israel, which had already offered its apologies for the raid, agreed under the deal to pay out $20 million to the bereaved and wounded in return for Turkey dropping outstanding legal claims.

Both countries are to appoint ambassadors under an agreement which is partly driven by the prospect of lucrative Mediterranean gas deals.

Under the deal, the naval blockade of Gaza, which Ankara had wanted lifted, remains in force, leaving Palestinians at the mercy of Tel Aviv cruelty.

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