Turkey: Israel should avoid flotilla face-off

AP News
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Posted: May 27, 2011 4:13 AM
Turkey: Israel should avoid flotilla face-off

Turkey's foreign minister says he hopes Israel will avoid confrontation as a new aid flotilla prepares to depart for the Gaza Strip.

Ahmet Davutoglu said in an interview aired on Ulke TV late Thursday that he believes Israel "has gained sufficient experience" after last year's Israeli raid on a flotilla that killed eight Turks and one Turkish-American and sparked international outrage. Each side accused the other of starting the violence.

A coalition of pro-Palestinian groups say a flotilla will set sail in the third week of June. Israel has vowed to stop any attempt to breach its sea blockade of Gaza.

A Turkish Islamic aid group said it expects the convoy to be at least twice as big as the one that attempted to reach Gaza last year.