Israel to Withdraw Police Representative in Turkey

Public Security Minister's decision motivated by lack of working relationships and concerns for the police representative's safety.

Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch announced Monday that Israel will withdraw its police representative in Turkey following the deepening crisis between Jerusalem and Ankara.

"Lately, there have not been working relations between the police representative and the Turks. In addition, we are concerned for the safety of the representative and as such he will be transferred in the coming days," said Aharonovitch.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

The representatives in Turkey also provide services to other Eastern European countries and as such the intention is to transfer these representatives to Romania.

The recent crisis in Israel-Turkey relations deepened after the UN-commissioned report on the 2010 Gaza flotilla raid was leaked to the New York Times, foiling a last-ditch effort to patch up relations between the two countries.

Turkey then announced a series of measures against Israel, beginning with the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador along with other senior diplomats and the downgrading of bilateral relations to the level of second secretary.

Reports on Friday alleged that U.S. President Barack Obama will meet Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoganat the UN General Assembly in New York this week to urge the Turkism PM to repair relations with Israel.

Speaking to AFP on Saturday, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu rejected the notion that the United States would be able to sway Turkey to back down on its hostilities toward Israel, saying: "We do not need mediation ... for Israel in any way."

"The demands of Turkey are clear," Davutoglu added, insisting that "no one should test our resolve on this matter," adding that the Americans "are probably the people who best understand Turkey's position on this issue."

The deterioration in diplomatic ties began when the Israel Defense Forces raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla in 2010 left nine Turkish citizens dead. Following the incident, Israel refused the Turkish request to apologize for the deaths as well as pay compensation to the families of the Turks killed.