Trkish experts welcome Israel-Hamas cease-fire

ANKARA (AA) – Israel backed down and agreed to a cease-fire deal with Hamas because of international pressure and the Palestinian resistance group’s response with more advanced weapons. Turkish experts said Friday.

They also hailed Turkey’s effective diplomacy with countries in the region.

Ahmet Kasim Han, vice-rector of Istanbul-based Altinbas University told Anadolu Agency that Israel agreed to the deal to get life back to normal and resume the country’s economic activity.

“Although the current situation does not result in a de facto sanction, there are serious discussions on the ground that Israel’s practices against Palestinians are unfair,” said Han.

“In addition, government discussions are still going on,” he said, referring to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who failed to form the government after elections. “Therefore, he took this decision to maintain social tranquility and peace in his own country.”

Noting that Israeli security units are also aware that their attacks are unsustainable, Han said Israel accepted the cease-fire due to the rise in the number of civilian casualties and the risk of interrupting its struggle.

He said Hamas strengthened its position by showing sufficient political and military presence during the attacks.

Another scholar at Istanbul Medeniyet University, Ozden Zeynep Oktav, said Turkey had important diplomatic initiatives in ensuring a cease-fire.

“[Turkish] President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had talks with the president of nine countries and even former heads of state. Likewise, the Foreign Ministry also conducted intensive diplomacy,” she said. “Negotiations took place between Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Syria. In this process, Saudi Arabia-Qatar-Turkey convergence took place.”

In Israel, apart from the fanatical Jews, the public reacted to the attacks on holy places and the Netanyahu government, according to Oktay.

Professor of International Relations at Antalya Bilim University, Tarik Oguzlu, pointed out that Israeli Arabs took to the streets for the first time and organized very serious protests.

Oguzlu said one of the most important reasons behind Israel’s increasing the number of attacks might be to make a proposal for a “two-state” solution difficult.

He said normalization steps taken by countries in the region encouraged Israel.

Noting that the cease-fire process will not bring a permanent solution like previous ones, Oguzlu said Israel has been systematically organizing attacks every few years.

“This cease-fire could also trigger a renegotiation table between Hamas and President Mahmoud Abbas, who are in conflict,” he said.

Tayyar Ari, a prominent international relations professor at Uludag University in the northwestern province of Bursa, said Israel made the cease-fire decision because of international pressure and was trying to gain time.

He said the cease-fire would not bring peace nor a two-state solution to the agenda. “Israel has just given a break to attacks.”

“The more effective weapons in Hamas’ hands will surely be a deterrent to Israel,” he said. “I do not think that Israel will make such extensive attacks from now on. For example, Israel could not afford a ground operation.”

Ar said Turkey conducted the process with effective diplomacy and brought the event to a different threshold with the proposal of an international protection force.

Turkey welcomed the cease-fire deal between Hamas and Israel and said it hopes the pause becomes permanent.

It denounced the eruption of clashes as a result of Israel’s “illegal actions and serious provocations against the Palestinians.”

A cease-fire between Israel and Hamas took effect at 2 a.m. Friday (2300GMT Thursday).

The Egyptian-brokered truce came after 11 days of Israeli airstrikes on the blockaded Gaza Strip.

A total of 248 Palestinians, including 39 women and 66 children, have been killed by Israeli attacks on Gaza since May 10.

Source: Anadolu Agency