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Erdogan Labels Netanyahu ‘War Criminal’ Over Gaza Offensive

Erdogan accused Western powers of overlooking the deaths of innocent people in Gaza.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan condemned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday, asserting that he would eventually face trial as a war criminal for Israel’s ongoing offensive in the Gaza Strip. Erdogan criticised Western nations supporting Israel, accusing them of providing “unconditional support to kill babies” and being complicit in what he described as Israel’s crimes.

Speaking at an Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) committee meeting in Istanbul, Erdogan compared Netanyahu to former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic, who faced trial for genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes in The Hague. Erdogan declared that Netanyahu, whom he labelled the “butcher of Gaza,” would be tried similarly.

Erdogan accused Western powers of using the excuse of Hamas to overlook the deaths of innocent people and referred to them as “blind and deaf.” Turkey, unlike many Western allies and some Gulf states, does not classify Hamas as a terrorist group and hosts some of its members.

The Turkish president emphasised the role of a contact group formed by the OIC and Arab League to engage in discussions about Gaza with Western countries. Erdogan insisted that these discussions would persist until the hostilities in Gaza ceased. He also called for further action, stating that the United Nations Human Rights Council and the International Criminal Court (ICC) must be involved. Erdogan stressed that Israel’s nuclear arsenal should not be forgotten.

Furthermore, Erdogan criticised the United Nations Security Council, advocating for urgent reform. He expressed dissatisfaction with the current structure, particularly noting that the five permanent members— the United States, Russia, China, Britain, and France— did not adequately represent the world. Erdogan claimed that the sincere efforts of U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres were sabotaged by Security Council members, asserting that the existing system cannot bring peace or hope to humanity.

Kiki Garba

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