Erdogan Signs Bill Putting Reconciliation With Israel Into Effect

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Photo of Mavi Marmara taken on May 22, 2010 Credit: AP

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erodogan signed a bill on Wednesday that provides the legislative authority to implement the reconciliation agreement between Turkey and Israel.

The agreement, which was years in the making, is designed in part to resolve claims in connection with the storming in 2010 of the Mavi Marmara by Israeli commandos, during which 10 Turkish national were killed. The ship was part which was part of a Turkish flotilla seeking to break Israel's naval blockade of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.

With Erdogan's formal assent, the bill, which had been passed by the Turkish parliament, now takes effect. It includes a provision voiding any legal claims brought against members of the Israel Defense Forces and claims that might be brought in the future.

Also stipulated in the arrangement, Israel will have 25 days to transfer $20 million to a humanitarian fund established by the Turkish government. The fund will be used for compensation payments to the families of the Turkish citizens killed by Israeli soldiers during the takeover of the Mavi Marmara. 

The agreement also provides for normalization of relations, the removal of sanctions the countries have imposed on one another, an increase in the level of diplomatic relations and an exchange of ambassadors.

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