Turkey FM Denounces Murder of Family Members in Itamar as 'Act of Terror'

Ahmet Davutoglu published message on Foreign Ministry's website saying the murder 'is a crime that violates most basic of rights, the right to life.'

In an unprecedented move, Turkey's foreign minister published a message on the ministry's website on Tuesday denouncing the brutal murder of a family in the settlement of Itamar.

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu wrote in the message that the "act of terror, against innocent children is a crime that violates the most basic of rights, the right to life."

Friday's murder of five family members in the West Bank settlement of Itamar has drawn widespread condemnation, including from Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas.

But controversy has arisen from an Israeli announcement of renewed settlement construction, which came in the wake of the murders.

In his message, Davutoglu condemns the settlement construction, writing that it is "a violation of international law."

His message continues that despite the settlement building, the act of terror in Itamar must also be condemned.

"This act is unacceptable," Davutoglu writes, adding that he expects the perpetrators to be caught and brought to justice as soon as possible.

Relations between Israel and Turkey deteriorated greatly following Israel's raid on a Turkish Gaza-bound aid flotilla, during which nine Turkish citizens were killed.

Relations have improved of late with Turkey offering aid to Israel in the wake of a devastating wildfire that destroyed large areas of the country late last year.