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Report: Erdogan’s role in couple release shows improved ties

i24NEWS

clock 2 min read

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan delivers a speech during the parliamentary group meeting at the Grand National Assembly of Turkey in Ankara, Turkey, on October 6, 2021.
Adem Altan/AFPTurkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan delivers a speech during the parliamentary group meeting at the Grand National Assembly of Turkey in Ankara, Turkey, on October 6, 2021.

Experts believe Erdogan’s participation in the incident encouraged the chances of reconciliation

Reports from Israel’s media are predicting that the involvement of Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the recent release of an Israeli couple could indicate the start of warmer relations between the two states.

Mordy and Natalie Oknin, the previously detained couple, were arrested on charges of spying by Turkey’s authorities after the pair took pictures of Erdogan’s residence.

The pair were later released, and Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett thanked Erdogan for his role in freeing the couple.

However, several media reports are arguing that the incident should not just be looked at as a diplomatic crisis, but rather, as an event which may lead to improving strained ties between Israel and Turkey.

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Israel’s Channel 13 referenced an official source who detailed that Erdogan’s direct participation in the incident encouraged the chances of reconciliation between the two countries.

Over the past few months, “Erdogan tried asking… openly - he even said it in his own words that he wants to improve relations with Israel,” Alon Liel, former charge d’affairs at Israel’s mission to Turkey explained to Israel’s Kan broadcaster.

“In my opinion, maybe Israel should evaluate this crisis in another way, like seeing this as an opportunity to open a healthy dialogue channel between the two foreign ministries,” Dr. Eytan Hai Cohen Yanarocak, an expert on Turkey from the Moshe Dayan Center at Tel Aviv University, told Kan.