First Turkish warship in Israel for more than a decade

A Turkish warship docked in Israel this weekend for the first time since 2010, amid renewed bilateral ties between the two countries, officials and witnesses said Sunday.

The TCG Kemalreis frigate was docked Sunday in the port of Haifa, a large city in the north of the country and headquarters of the Israeli navy, an AFP team noted.

A spokesman for the Israeli army indicated that this warship was making a stopover within the framework of “NATO activities”.

In Ankara, the Turkish Ministry of Defense specified that this frigate was to remain in the port of Haifa until September 6.

→Read also: Erdogan: ‘Steps taken with Israel will not diminish Turkey’s support for Palestine’

After months of diplomatic warming, Israel and Turkey announced on August 17 the full restoration of diplomatic relations and the return of ambassadors to both countries.

Relations between the two countries were strained in 2010 after the deadly assault by Israeli forces on the Turkish ship Mavi Marmara, which was trying to deliver aid to Gaza, a Palestinian enclave under Israeli blockade and controlled by the Islamists of the Hamas.

Since that date, no Turkish warship had docked in Israel.


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