Turkey’s Erdogan: Israel’s Netanyahu solely responsible for recent Middle East tensions

By Thomson Reuters Apr 16, 2024 | 11:33 AM

ANKARA (Reuters) – Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Israeli leadership are solely responsible for the recent escalation of tensions in the Middle East, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday.

“Israel is trying to provoke a regional conflict, and its attack on Iran’s embassy in Damascus was the last drop,” he told a press conference in Ankara after a cabinet meeting.

He added that new regional conflicts were possible as long as the “cruelty and genocide” in Gaza continued, and called on all parties to act with common sense. He also slammed the West for condemning Iran’s attack but not Israel’s strike on Iran’s embassy.

Iran attacked Israel with hundreds of explosive drones, cruise missiles and ballistic missiles launched on Saturday night, to which Israeli officials have vowed to respond.

Iran called the barrage retaliation for an Israeli strike that flattened a building in its embassy compound in Damascus on April 1 and killed two of its generals and several other officers.

(Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu and Burcu Karakas; Writing by Ece Toksabay)