16 April 2014, Wednesday
Today's Zaman

Indictment seeks life for Israeli top commanders over Mavi Marmara raid

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23 May 2012, Wednesday /TODAY'S ZAMAN
An indictment prepared by an İstanbul prosecutor seeks 10 aggravated life imprisonment sentences for each of the four Israeli top commanders, including the country's chief of General Staff, involved in a 2010 Israeli attack on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla that left nine Turks dead, a Turkish daily reported on Wednesday.

The details of the indictment come days before the second anniversary of the deadly Israeli attack on the Mavi Marmara on May 31, 2010. The Sabah daily reported on Wednesday that the indictment was prepared by İstanbul Specially Authorized Prosecutor Mehmet Akif Ekinci against the Israeli soldiers and officers who carried out the raid and ordered it.

The daily added that the 144-page indictment mentions 10 “slain Turks,” including Süleyman Söylemez, who was among those injured in the raid and who is still in a vegetative state. The document also mentions 490 victims and complainants, including 189 people who were injured in the attacks.

The indictment reportedly seeks 10 aggravated life imprisonment sentences for former Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) Chief of General Staff Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, Naval Forces commander Vice Adm. Eliezer Marom, Israel's military intelligence chief Maj. Gen. Amos Yadlin and Air Forces Intelligence head Brig. Gen. Avishai Levi.

The prosecutor reportedly heard the testimonies of nearly 600 witnesses, which included passengers aboard the ship and the relatives of victims as part of the investigation.

Sabah said the indictment had been submitted to İstanbul Chief Public Prosecutor Turan Çolakkadı, who will either approve or reject a request to submit it to a relevant court. The indictment is likely to further strain ties between the two regional powers, which have already deteriorated sharply since the deadly raid in 2010.

Eight Turkish nationals and one Turkish American were killed when the Israeli Navy attacked an international aid flotilla trying to break an Israeli blockade of Gaza in May 2010. Following the attack, Israel's government set up the Turkel Commission, a commission of inquiry headed by Israeli Supreme Court Justice Jacob Turkel, to investigate the attack. Turkish leaders dismissed the Israeli investigation, and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon repeated the demand for an independent investigation, stating that the Israeli investigation would not have international credibility.

Turkey also established an inquiry, which concluded, in contrast to the Israeli inquiry, that the Gaza blockade and the Israeli raid are illegal. After the Turkish inquiry, Turkey described the raid as a violation of international law “tantamount to banditry and piracy” and described the killings of activists as “state-sponsored terrorism.” Concerning the Israeli inquiry, Turkey said its own commission was “surprised, appalled and dismayed that the national inquiry process in Israel has resulted in the exoneration of the Israeli armed forces.”

Ankara wants an official apology from Israel for the raid and calls for the lifting of the Gaza blockade but both demands have been rejected by the Israeli government so far. With tensions increased, Turkey has expelled the Israeli ambassador and suspended military agreements it had with the country.

In New York, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu declined to comment on the development, noting that the submission of the indictment to the court is part of the judicial process. But he underlined that it is Turkey’s duty to protect the rights of its citizens at both the national and international level. He added that the judicial process should be considered part of this duty.

Davutoğlu told TRT Haber TV from New York on Wednesday that he spoken with Justice Minister Sadullah Ergin on this issue and had been briefed by him. The Turkish foreign minister added that the Turkish government will support Turkish nationals whenever and wherever they seek legal regress. Davutoğlu reiterated Turkey’s demands from Israel and said Turkey won’t back down from its position until Israel meets Turkey’s requests.

The blockade is illegal. Not only do you blitz your neighbour, Palestine, you blitzed the flotilla. You ignore the treaties that the vast majority of the world signs up to. Your country has no credibility in the whole world. If it wasn't bankrolled by the USA you would be nowhere. If all the EU foll...
@Aban don Al Hope, Sounds like you don't know anything about what's going on in Turkey recently. So read this and start to learn now: Turkey already apologized and paid compensation for the Uludere incident. When Israel will do the same for the 10 armless civilians he murdered?
C. Emre Gülsever
@mehrdad, you say "there are more journalist in turkish jails then in chinese ones" you seem not to know anything for the background and reasons for that, so what you say is based on prejudice and must not be taken seriously, imprisoned people in china are in prisons because they simply voice their ...
C. Emre Gülsever
I.Guerbuez, don't take it emotionally. This is not hating Turks, but telling facts. Turkish government wants an apology and the punishment of the responsible Israeli commanders, and the own citizens of Turkey demand an apology and the punishment of the responsible Turkish military commanders for the...
Aban don Al Hope
Corrected Comment: Hello, wake up folks! So called 'Armenian Genocide' is a claim, not a fact. It is out of the air claim created by Armenian lobbies mainly in France and USA whereas Mavi Marmara event is a FACT! Perpetrators of high seas piracy and murder should be punished. Whether they will or no...
Corrected Comment: Hello, wake up folks! So called 'Armenian Genocide' is a claim, not a fact. It is out of the air claim created by Armenian lobbies mainly in France and USA whereas Mavi Marmara event is a FACT! Perpetrators of high seas piracy and murder should be punished. Whether they will or no...
I am believing that Turkey is wrong. After fighting with Israel they will never be trusted by EU or US. Turkish government must apologizing to Israel and supporting Israel against Iran and Syria. Only then they will join the civilized world.
there are more journalist in turkish jails then in chinese ones. so much for the independent turkish justice system. beside that: erdogan can send his turkish james bond to israel to get them. have fun.:) @Senol: the interpol will do nothing and will not become a arm of the turkish injustice. so...
Hell, wake up folks! So called 'Armenian Genocide' is a claim, not a fact. It is out of the air claim created by Armenian lobbies mainly in France and USA whereas Mavi Marmara event is a FACT! Perpetrators of high seas piracy and murder should be punished. Wheather they will or not is up to the resp...
@Mark: dont get disillusioned. Read AI report about Israel to Gaza or Westbank. We talk about occupation, colonization, humiliation. Which of three points happenss in South Cypress? In the end North Cypress will get free from isolation...
There has been an independent report, set up under terms both Israel and Turkey aggreed on and where both parties where also present. The Palmer commission. The commission determined Israel's blockade of the Gaza Strip to be legal,but stated that the "decision to board the vessels with such substant...
Fact man
We are talking justice here? All senior Turkish military officers, who served from 1990-2000 must be put on trial for their role in killing thousands of innocent civilian Kurds. KURDISTAN INDEPENDENCE MOVEMENT
Turkey and Israel are brothers, this is a feude between family members
bill, you and other hillbilly s.wine are war criminals. You committed the genocide against native Americans and you aided in the genocide against Palestinians.
@Bill. Running a "legal" blockade is an act of war. Bill, the blockade of Gaza is illegal - there are numerous UN resolutions and the international community has repeatedly condemned Israel for the blockade. Alright? Get your facts right before you go around making your own facts. The Israelis kille...
Turkey has every right to seek proper judicial redress for the unwarranted killing of Turkish citizens.
It seems a few readers, especially those from the PKK, the armenian and jewish groups needs things spelt out completely to understand why Turkey does what it does and where it is applying pressure. Maybe you readers need lessons in strategy because you cannot think for youselves. Turkey is doing the...
@Yaacov, this process leads the way to have legal justification to be handed over Turkey (eg. Interpol)if these people ever leave Israel on European or US or any other soil as their is a warrant on their head and since many countries have legal agreements with criminal prosecution, although it might...
@Jack Kalpakian,what does Turkeys response on its own soil have anything to do with what Israel did in international waters, how do you equate these to be equal? Is this Armenian logic?
Those generals were very good friends with the former heads of the Turkish army, some of whom are now imprisoned. The AKP wants to destroy any remnant of Israeli-Turkish former friendship. It's very sad.
hahahahha, the one that has spent time in jail is Erdogan and he should return there for HIS criminal acts, but I reckon that he is using the legal system to protect him and step on the rights of innocent Turks, whoever he choses to sue. Erdogan the criminal, go back to jail where U belong
Please stick your Turkish and biased Indictment where the sun don't shine. What indictments are you issuing for those who approved military strikes that killed innocent Turks, huh? Make order in your own house before you dare interfere and meddle with the policy of a sovereing country. YOUR thugs go...
Incredible! So many commentators hating Turks! =( bill; Uncle Billy; Yavuz ( @hushhash ); Dutch Turk; Me (this is not myself); Zynell; asher pat; Phistook(!); Leon Aron; sergeant; GR(?); Habby; hushhash (yavuz); Jack Kalpakian; Recai Yahyaoglu; Yacoov(!); Realistic(!); pinar; Aban don Al Hope(!); A...
If the Gazza blockade is legal, so was the Warshaw Ghetto.
Johan-de H.zoon
No holidays abroad for the IDF members active in year 2010, as long as relations are not improved with Turkey. The names of all comandos that took part during the raid are there. This is going to be a new serie on dicovery channel: THE MOSSAD HUNTERS!!!!
Is their even one neighbor that Turkey has not antagonized and/or insulted? Your leaders are little puffed up braggarts. (and that sentence could land me in jail in Turkey!)
Yes, Turkey did not accept the conclusions of the Israeli(Turkel)inquiry.No problem.Israel did not accept the conclusions of the Turkish inquiry.There was a UN (Palmer) inquiry which Turkey demanded and got.Results accepted by Israel not Turkey.I guess the govt.of Turkey will demand as many inquires...
These Israeli's are funny people, look at their picture, the left one saying "it wasn't me", middle one "i am a puppet", the right one "give me another beer s.v.p., the one that is called, Eine Königin unter den Bieren " :D
actually, running a legal blockade is an act of war. Erdogan and his govt. are the war criminals. Accessories to manslaughter.
Uludere is by murderers? Yes, yes. Becos its not nice killing Kurds. No, no. But, what about Turkish? Yes, Jews and Kurds can kill Turkish, thats fine. But , please NO Turkish retaliation back. Thats not allowed.
Honest and Truth
What a joke! The people who write the Tonight Show for Jay Leno must be moon lighting at the Turkish Foreign Ministry.
Uncle Billy
Turkey is taking all steps to prevent any possibility of Israeli apology because the current government is so caught up with its neo-Ottoman visions of grandeur that they seek to block any possibility of rapprochement with Israel. This will only continue to be a lose-lose situation for both sides. ...
@hushhash, yeah your still stuck in your hollywood cliches? But these criminals should/will get worse circumstances.
A waste of valuable court time. Very backward. Turkey needs to move on.
@Zynell- Europe has already blocked products from Israel which are deemed to be from Settlements, its been in affect for the past 5 months. We should now lobby Europe to make sure no products from the Settlers occupying the north of Cyprus get to the EU's table.
"UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon repeated the demand for an independent investigation, stating that the Israeli investigation would not have international credibility." You forgot one little thing - "UN Palmer Report" that was comissioned BY BAN KI-MOON. I wonder why you omitted this detail - is ...
asher pat
The leaders of Turkey who sent the Flotilla, knowing the risks, committed a crime! It is the same as the Turkish army is going to court marshal the commanders who sent plan that kills 37 innocents in Ulluder. What about the international court to have Turkey admit massacred of 1.5 million Armenians?...
a new process began today
Recai Yahyaoğlu
First of all, the Mavi Marmara raid was a provocation, and was organized by Hamas, IHH, AKP. 2) Israel as an independent state was a fundamental right to defend its sovereignty.3)We are sorry for the killing people.4) I have a recommendation of the prosecutor in Istanbul: Do not waste time on nonsen...
Leon Aron
I am sure the Turkish generals behind bars wouldn't mind some company from their Israeli counterparts. Would be a lot more fun. And if you can't get the Israeli generals, may be there are a few Turkish ones left?? Might be easier....
Erdogan should enforce these arrest warrants with a military landing in Haifa! Come on Erdo, what have you been wasting those billions of dollars for on military toys when most of your population are living in poverty if you're not going to put them to good use?
Will the Turks be tried for the Armenian genocide?
if i was them ,i would be worried as we all remember "MIDNIGHT EXPRESS" movie took place in Istanbul . merciful nation .
This is the court system that sets Ogun Samast free; it is not a system of justice, but a system of ethnic exclusion and politics. Perhaps Israel will indict the Turkish General staff for Ulludere. Turkey just took another step towards rupturing its relations with the US; did you want some drones?...
Jack Kalpakian
LOL. A kangaroo court in Turkey 'sentencing' Israeli leaders, how pathetic. Try and enforce the decision.
Both the domestic reports are pretty much useless since everybody realized that they are biased and partial. The only independent one is the UN report.
I think Turkey will have a little difficulty to get the 4 commanders. The little difficulty is the invasion of Israel.
Aban don Al Hope
YES, at last we get some action. An international court should try these Israeli commanders for high seas piracy and murder.
we wont have the chance to arrest these thugs but as aymbol we can say: a thug is a thug. Simple is that. next topic is to lobby in europe against settler products from occupied palastine.
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