Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon made that point a day before Defense Minister Ehud Barak was due to fly to Turkey for a first visit by an Israeli official since the feud erupted Monday. The visit was scheduled before the row, but will be closely watched, especially because the quarrel was just the latest in a series of confrontations between the once-close allies.
Ayalon called in the Turkish ambassador earlier this week to reprimand him over a TV program that showed Israeli agents kidnapping children and shooting old men. He was forced to apologize after Turkey threatened to summon its ambassador home.
He seated Turkish Ambassador Ahmet Oğuz Çelikkol on a sofa lower than his own chair and wouldn't shake his hand in televised images of the meeting.
Ayalon told Channel 2 TV Saturday that his intent was not to humiliate Çelikkol. Still, he said Israel was right to make it clear to the Turks that there would be a "price tag" for what he said amounted to trampling upon the dignity of the Jewish state.
Asked what Israel would do if another objectionable TV segment were shown, Ayalon replied, "Maybe we would summon the ambassador; maybe we would expel their ambassador."
The same threat would apply to ambassadors from other nations that treat Israel similarly, he added -- echoing the attitude of Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, who has instructed Israeli diplomats not to "grovel" before their host countries.
Turkey responded coolly to his remarks.
"Since the effects of the crisis touched off by this person and the reactions of both our country and his are known, I don't think there is need for any further comment," Turkey's Foreign Ministry Spokesman Burak Özügergin said.
Israel and Turkey had built strong military and economic ties over the past 15 years, with Turkey becoming Israel's closest ally in the Muslim world.
But tension increased a year ago after Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan censured Israel for the high Palestinian civilian death toll during its military offensive in the Gaza Strip last winter.
Ayalon said in Saturday's TV interview that it was Erdoğan who affronted the Jewish state by storming off a stage he was sharing with Israeli President Shimon Peres at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, in the early days of the war.
Erdoğan's criticism has not eased, and he lashed out again at Israel hours before Ayalon summoned Çelikkol for the reprimand.
Turkey also canceled a high-profile military exercise last fall because Israel was to have participated. And the TV program that Israel found so objectionable is the second of its kind to air in Turkey in recent months.
Turkey's warming relations with Iran are also of great concern to Israel, which considers Tehran to be its most menacing enemy.
In Ankara, Turkey, on Saturday, members of an Islamic human rights group held a march to protest Barak's planned visit.