Turkey accuses U.S. of double standards over Gaza in rights report

By Thomson Reuters Apr 24, 2024 | 9:55 AM

ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkey on Wednesday accused the United States of having a policy of double standards on human rights, saying Washington’s annual rights report failed to reflect Israel’s assaults in Gaza.

Turkey’s foreign ministry said in a statement it was deeply concerned that the U.S. report did not “duly reflect the ongoing inhumane attacks in Gaza”.

The report was prepared with “political motives, far from impartiality and objectivity”, it said, calling on Washington to cease its “double-standard policy on human rights”.

It also cited U.S. ties with the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia which Ankara deems a terrorist organisation.

Israeli forces have killed more than 34,000 Palestinians in Gaza, according to health authorities there, many of them civilians and children. The enclave has been reduced to a wasteland and extreme food shortages have prompted fears of famine.

Israel launched its assault in response to an attack by the Hamas militant group on Oct. 7 in which Israel says 1,200 people were killed. It denies allegations of deliberately causing humanitarian suffering and targeting civilians.

Turkey has denounced Israel for its campaign in Gaza and called for a ceasefire. It has also criticised Western countries for what it calls their unconditional support of Israel.

In its report, the U.S. State Department said Israel’s war against Hamas had a “significant negative impact” on the human rights situation in Israel.

On Monday, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken rejected suggestions that Washington might have double standards over Israel’s record.

(Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu, Editing by Angus MacSwan)