Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday evening that Türkiye is ready to play the role of mediator to end the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, if the two sides make such a proposal, including the exchange of hostages.
Erdogan added, in a press conference after a cabinet meeting in Ankara, “We believe that there will be no peace in the region without an independent, sovereign state of Palestine, and Türkiye is making the necessary preparations to send humanitarian aid to Gaza”.
The Turkish President urged Israel to stop bombing Palestinian territories, and urged the Palestinians not to harass Israeli civilian settlements.
Erdogan also discussed the latest developments in the fighting between Israel and the Palestinians in phone calls with the leaders of Israel, the Palestinian Authority, Lebanon, Qatar and Egypt.
The Turkish presidency said, in a post on the X, that Erdogan informed Israeli President Isaac Herzog that any steps that cause collective harm to the residents of the Gaza Strip will increase the amount of suffering in the region.
Erdogan’s office said that the Turkish President informed his Palestinian counterpart, Mahmoud Abbas, during a phone call that Türkiye was making every effort to end the fighting and ensure calm in the region.
The Turkish President held a separate call with the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani, in which they discussed the escalating clashes in the region against the backdrop of Israeli-Palestinian tension, and exchanged views in this regard.
Erdogan also discussed regional tension, in another separate phone call, with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al Sisi, where the two leaders urged Hamas and Israel to immediately end the violence and protect civilians, and agreed on the need not to expose civilians to further risks and loss of life.
Erdogan reiterated his country’s readiness to make every effort to stop the clashes as soon as possible and reduce tension in the Gaza Strip.
In this regard, he said, “We’re determined to intensify the diplomatic efforts that we have begun in order to restore calm”.
Erdogan pointed to the repeated violations that included al Aqsa Mosque, and the responses that Türkiye repeatedly expressed regarding this at a “time when the world was silent”.
The Turkish President had spoken about the United States’ support for Israel, mentioning the sending of the US aircraft carrier Gerald Ford to the region, at a time when US forces in northeastern Syria shot down a Turkish drone, and the US forces there continued to support and train Kurdish terrorist groups.