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Turkey suspends trade with Israel until permanent ceasefire in Gaza

Turkey announced Friday that it will not resume trade with Israel, worth $7 billion a year, until a permanent ceasefire and humanitarian aid are secured in Gaza, Israel’s first major partner stop trade due to conflict.

Israel’s uncompromising attitude and the worsening situation in the Rafah region of southern Gaza, where Israel has threatened to launch a new offensive, have led Turkey to suspend all exports and imports, Trade Minister Omer said. Bolat.

Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz criticized Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan’s move announced Thursday evening, saying it violates international trade agreements and is “the behavior of a dictator.”

The militant group Hamas, which governs Gaza, praised the decision as courageous and pro-Palestinian rights.

“We have decided to stop exports and imports to and from Israel until a permanent ceasefire is reached (in Gaza) and humanitarian aid is allowed without interruption,” Minister Bolat said.

Turkey is negotiating “with our Palestinian brothers alternative arrangements to ensure that they are not affected by this decision”, he added when announcing April trade data.

Last month, Turkey restricted exports of steel, fertilizers and jet fuel, among 54 product categories, over what it said was Israel’s refusal to allow Ankara to participate in aid drop operations to Gaza.

All remaining trade, which last year amounted to $5.4 billion in Turkish exports and $1.6 billion in Israeli imports, is now blocked.

Turkey’s main exports to Israel are steel, vehicles, plastics, electrical devices and machinery, while imports are dominated by fuels, at $634 million last year, according to Turkish trade data.

Source: Terra

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