Turkey condemns Israel's 'unacceptable' security sweep
Despite general rapprochement between the countries
Turkey on Friday condemned Israel over its security operations in the Palestinian territories in recent days, a statement coming amid a general rapprochement in the relations between the two countries.
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"We find unacceptable and strongly condemn that Israeli security forces have caused the death of seven Palestinian civilians, including a child, in several cities in Palestine, Jenin in particular, and inflicted injuries during their intervention to the Muslims present in the Al-Aqsa Mosque for prayers this morning," the statement by Turkey's Foreign Ministry read.
"We are deeply concerned by the recently escalating tension in the region. We would like to underline, once again, the importance of preventing provocations and threats against the status and spirit of Al-Aqsa Mosque, especially in this critical period."
The statement refers to clashes between Palestinians and Israeli police at the flashpoint site of Temple Mount in Jerusalem on Friday as thousands gathered for prayers during the holy month of Ramadan. Medics said more than 150 Palestinians were wounded in the most serious spate of violence at the site in nearly a year.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, meanwhile, offered Turkey's Jewish citizens holiday greetings on the eve of the Pesach festival.
Turkey and Israel have in recent months been working to mend their long-strained ties, including a landmark trip to Turkey last month by Israeli President Isaac Herzog for talks with his opposite number.
Last week Erdogan condemned the deadly terrorist attack in Tel Aviv where a Palestinian gunman killed three people and left over 10 wounded in a bar.