Erdoğan harshly criticized the world’s largest international body on Thursday during his historic UN address and said the United Nations could not show the necessary leadership to win over fears threatening humanity and their hopes, referring to Somalia, where he visited last month.
He spoke about the necessity to restructure the UN and renew its vision so that the international body protects the laws of humanity and does not serve the interests of a certain number of countries.
“I have seen in Somalia last month the failure of the UN and the international community in dealing with the urgent needs of the world,” Erdoğan said.
Recalling his own personal observations, he said it is impossible to describe the poverty and pain he had witnessed in Somalia and that it is a shame for the international community to see thousands of children dying because of lack of bread and water in Somalia's tragedy.
The Turkish prime minister said the two-decades long civil war in Somalia has basically destroyed all sources necessary for life, adding that Somali people are walking towards death in front of the entire global community. “Today, the international community watches Somalia as if they were watching a film without a reaction. We have to deal with this picture which is a test for the entire humanity,” Erdoğan said.
According to Erdoğan, no one can talk about peace, justice and civilization in the world unless what he said the voice of Somalia is heard.
Israel chief culprit in hindering peace
Erdoğan also harshly criticized Israel for hindering peace in the Middle East and reiterated Turkey’s position that the Jewish state must offer apology as a condition to restore ties.
He said Turkey wants to call on Israel to understand there was no substitute for peace and the picture in the region was not just an equation of “peace for security.”
Erdoğan said there are hundreds of General Assembly decisions that were adopted on Israel and there are 89 Security Council resolutions which Israel only shrugged off. “What is more painful is that the UN has been incapable of taking the necessary steps to end the humanitarian tragedy that Palestinians have gone and are going through,” Erdoğan stressed.
Erdoğan said Turkey is ready to extend all efforts to achieve peace in the Middle East, adding that Turkey will display active efforts to solve the Arab-Israeli conflict, for recognition of the Palestinian state, to facilitate compromise among Palestinian groups, and to see an end to the blockade imposed on Gaza.
Erdoğan also pointed to what he called injustice regarding sanctions due to suspected nuclear activities. He said Israel, which utilizes phosphorus bomb and has a nuclear weapon in its arsenal, never faces sanctions but he said when the Western nations “smell similar bombs” in the region, they impose sanctions, referring to Iran’s suspected nuclear program and sanctions on the regime to relinquish the nuclear activities.
Complaining of tolerance the international community is showing to Israel, Erdoğan underlined that it is Palestinian territories that are occupied, not Israeli ones and said “one has to ask permission from Israel to bring in a box of tomatoes to Palestine.” He said Israeli leaders must realize that the real security for the Jewish nation is the advent of peace.
He urged the world nations to press on Israel to show its leadership that the country is not above the rule of law.
The Turkish prime minister also asked the UN member states to recognize Palestine, which he said was in fact established by this body but never implemented.
Speaking about lethal Israeli raid into Mavi Marmara ship, Erdoğan said Israel has made a big mistake to a friendly nation – Turkey. He said Turkey cannot remain silent and indifferent to an incident where Israel “martyrs nine of our citizens.”
Erdoğan reiterated Turkey’s position and said unless Turkey’s demands – official apology, compensation and lifting Gaza blockade – are met, it is impossible that Turkey restores ties with Israel. He appealed the Israeli people and said he wants to underline that Turkey has no problem with the Israeli people. “We have a problem with the Israeli gov’t,” he said, adding that the Israeli government should be blamed for being the primary source of tension between Turkey and Israel.