Should Türkiye mediate between Israel and Palestine?

Should Türkiye mediate between Israel and Palestine?

The overlapping visits of Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas to Türkiye and the planned visit of Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu raised a question: “Is Türkiye taking on a mediation role?”

Is there such a plan or intention? If so, what does it mean for Türkiye and the world? We asked these questions to United World International author Mehmet Perinçek. We also asked for his assessment of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s visit to Türkiye.

Palestine and Türkiyes security

For a long time, Türkiye has been supporting the Palestinian people in their rightful struggle against Israel’s expansionism and occupation. We believe that the Palestinian cause is not only a matter of the Palestinians but also takes place on behalf of all the people suffering from Israeli and Western imperialism’s aggressions. Therefore, a fair and just resolution of the Palestinian issue is of great importance for the security and stability of the region.

This is also crucial for Türkiye’s security. Israel supports the “Greater Kurdistan” project and the PKK/YPG terrorist organization, indicating a strategic confrontation between Türkiye and Israel. Until Israel abandons this support, normalization of relations should not be considered.

Domestic problems in Israel have become quite serious. In order not to be isolated in the region, Israel must move away from being a satellite of the US. As a new world is being shaped, Israel should adopt an appropriate stance. It needs to focus on its internal issues and refrain from aggression against countries in the region.

The cost of mediation to Türkiye

Regarding Türkiye’s possible role as a mediator, it is essential to emphasize that being a mediator means being equidistant from the both sides. If there is a mediation plan or if someone suggests or presents such an idea to Türkiye, the cost it would be abandoning full support for Palestine. It doesn’t matter whether Türkiye, Israel and Palestine accept this plan because Türkiye positioning itself equidistant from Israel and Palestine would lead to hostility towards Iran, which is very dangerous.

Israel’s plan of “Greater Kurdistan”

In fact, Turkish mediation between Israel and Palestine would be similar to Türkiye’s mediation between Azerbaijan and Armenia, that is, to give up supporting the just side and stand at an equal distance between the just and the unjust. However, such mediation may not rein in Israel’s aggression; in fact, it may provide Israel with even more room to act and lead Türkiye to overlook Israel’s plan of “Greater Kurdistan”.

Creating a sufficient force can solve the Palestinian problem. Türkiye putting weight on the Palestinian side is the key to a solution.

Türkiye and Egypts common interests

Matters concerning Israel are also directly related to Türkiye’s interests in the Eastern Mediterranean. Israel is part of the anti-Türkiye bloc formed by the US, along with France, Greece, and Southern Cyprus. These countries conduct joint naval exercises against Türkiye. Türkiye-Egypt relations are crucial to Counter-balance this bloc, ensure stability in the Eastern Mediterranean and defend Türkiye’s security. Al-Sisi’s visit holds significant importance in this context. Türkiye and Egypt share common interests in security, economy, and other vital regional issues. Though it may be late, normalizing the bilateral relations was needed.

After Egypt, the next step should be to normalize relations with Syria. Türkiye should not waste time about it.

Mehmet Perinçek

Historian and political scientist (Türkiye)

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June 2024