Erdogan Defends Hamas, Says Over 1,000 Members are Being Treated in Turkish Hospitals

Turkish President Erdogan announces over 1,000 Hamas members are being treated in Turkish hospitals, contradicting the group's classification as a terrorist organization by Israel, the US, and the EU. Erdogan defends Hamas as a "resistance movement" and criticizes the international community for not pressuring Israel to agree to a ceasefire in the Gaza war.

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Aqsa Younas Rana
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Erdogan Defies International Consensus, Supports Hamas Amid Gaza War

Erdogan Defends Hamas, Says Over 1,000 Members are Being Treated in Turkish Hospitals

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has sparked controversy by announcing that over 1,000 members of the Palestinian group Hamas are being treated in hospitals across Turkey. Erdogan's statement, made during a press conference with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in Ankara on Monday, contradicts the classification of Hamas as a terrorist organization by Israel, the United States, and the European Union.

Why this matters: Erdogan's support for Hamas has significant implications for the Middle East peace process and may exacerbate tensions between Turkey and Western nations. This move could also embolden extremist groups and undermine international efforts to combat terrorism.

Erdogan reiterated his stance that Hamas is a "resistance movement," fighting to "protect its own territory and its people." The Turkish leader expressed disappointment with the Greek view that deems Hamas a terrorist organization and criticized the international community for not doing enough to pressure Israel to agree to a ceasefire in the ongoing Gaza war.

Turkey has taken a strong stance against Israel's attacks on Gaza, calling for an immediate ceasefire and denouncing what it perceives as unconditional Western support for Israel. Ankara has halted all trade with Israel and announced its decision to join South Africa's initiative to have Israel tried for genocide at the International Court of Justice.

"It has become clear who sides with peace and dialogue, and who wants clashes continuing and more bloodshed," Erdogan stated, adding that "Neither Europe nor America showed a reaction that would force Israel into a ceasefire."

Erdogan's intelligence chief, Ibrahim Kalin, recently met with Hamas leaders in Doha to discuss ceasefire talks and the access of humanitarian aid into Gaza. While Hamas has accepted a ceasefire proposal by Qatar and Egypt, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government did not want the offensive to end.

As the civilian death toll and devastation in Gaza mount, Israel's military conduct has come under increasing international scrutiny in recent weeks. The Gaza Health Ministry reported that the Palestinian death toll in Gaza has surpassed 35,000, with aid groups warning of a growing humanitarian crisis as over 360,000 people have fled the southern city of Rafah since the first Israeli evacuation order a week ago.

Key Takeaways

  • Turkish President Erdogan says over 1,000 Hamas members are being treated in Turkish hospitals.
  • Erdogan's support for Hamas contradicts its classification as a terrorist organization by Israel, US, and EU.
  • Turkey has halted trade with Israel and seeks to have Israel tried for genocide at the International Court of Justice.
  • Erdogan's intelligence chief met with Hamas leaders to discuss ceasefire talks and humanitarian aid in Gaza.
  • The Gaza Health Ministry reports over 35,000 Palestinian deaths, with 360,000 people fleeing the southern city of Rafah.