Israel and Turkey are in the same camp of countries that understands the nature of the threat posed by regional extremists.

(Communicated by the Foreign Minister’s Bureau)

Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni told a group of visiting journalists from Turkey and Israel and Turkey are in the same camp of countries that understands the nature of the threat posed by regional extremists. But what is needed is not only the understanding of the moderate leaders, but also that they make their position against extremists and terror clear to their own citizens. 

FM Livni said: I do not have to have to explain the meanings of terror in the streets to Turkish citizens. Israeli civilians are targeted on a daily basis from Gaza. Israel left Gaza, and there is no justifiable reason for these attacks. It is unacceptable, and we will not reconcile ourselves to this situation. Terror is terror is terror, and Israel will do all in its power to stop these attacks, to strike at the Hamas and prevent it from increasing its strength. At the same time, we will continue negotiations with the moderates.

Sometimes, in warfare, innocent civilians are hurt. This is not our aim. I would like to assure you that our values and Israeli army’s methods of operation dictate the steps necessary to reduce civilian casualties. However, the fact that the terrorists operate from within civilian population centers, manufacture rockets in private homes, and launch them from the heart of civilian areas is the direct cause of the civilian casualties.

Terror is extracting a dear price from Israel. But the terror is not Israel’s problem alone. Turkey understands this. Action must be taken against terror, and the meaning of action against terror is the clear distinction between moderates and extremists – expressed in the actions and statements of the moderate world leaders, even when it is not convenient in terms of public opinion in some countries.