Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan reiterated on Saturday his country's intent to refer the legality of Israel's Gaza blockade to The Hague, adding a criticism of U.S. President Barack Obama's position regarding Israel's 2010 of a Turkish Gaza-bound flotilla.
Speaking a convention of businessmen in the central Turkish city of Kayseri broadcast live on Turkey's state news channel TRT Erdogan vowed to continue the legal struggle for justice for the nine people killed in the raid.
"We will carry this struggle to The Hague and Erdogan criticizes Obama," the Turkish premier said, criticizing Turkish opposition leaders for what he described as "acting as advocates for Israel."
Erdogan was also deeply critical of the United States position on the Mavi Marmara incident, pointing out that he had to point out to Obama how the attack had left nine Turks dead from wounds inflicted by 35 bullets mostly fired from close range, one of them an American passport holder.
"I asked President Obama whether the reason he showed no interest in one of his nationals being killed was because [the victim] was [ethnically] Turkish - he didn't reply," said Erdogan.
Edogan's comments came a week Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu first indicated that Turkey was to appeal the International Court of Justice in The Hague as soon as next week in order to probe the legality of Israel's naval blockade on the Gaza Strip, saying that Turkey could not "accept the blockade on Gaza."
"We cannot say that the blockade aligns with international law," he said, adding that the stance taken by the Palmer Commission Report was the author's "personal opinion, one which does not correspond with Turkey's position."
Speaking in an interview with Turkish station TRT on Saturday, Davutoglu said that Ankara was preparing to appeal the international court in The Hague, reiterating the official Turkish position which rejects the finds of the Palmer Commission report.
He added that Ankara was planning to initiate the Hague appeal as soon as next week, saying: "We are bound by the International Court of Justice. We say that the ICJ decides."
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