Ankara:Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu a “tyrant” who kills Palestinian children, as a heated war of words between the two officials continues.
“Hey Netanyahu, behave yourself. You are a tyrant, you are a tyrant who massacred seven-year-old Palestinian children,” Erdogan told supporters in capital Ankara.
The remarks were a direct response to Netanyahu’s attacks earlier in the day, who called the Turkish head of state a “dictator” and “a joke” who put journalists in jail.
The fiery exchanges began a day earlier, when Turkey denounced Netanyahu for his “blatant racism” against Arab Israelis after the rightist premier said the occupied Palestinian territories only belonged to the Jewish people and not all citizens.
“Turkey’s dictator Erdogan attacks Israel’s democracy while Turkish journalists and judges fill his prisons,” Netanyahu wrote in an Instagram post. “What a joke!”
In his remarks on Wednesday, Erdogan pointed to Israel’s ongoing violent crackdown on Palestinians in Jerusalem al-Quds, denouncing Israeli security forces for entering a “holy place.”
“Do not provoke. Look, we have not oppressed any of the Jews in this country. We have not done anything you did to any synagogues here. Don’t provoke us. We will not fall into this trap,” he warned Netanyahu.
Ibrahim Kalin, Erdogan’s spokesman, also reacted to Netanyahu’s attacks, saying the Israeli PM was mad at Erdogan “for exposing him.
“The apartheid state he leads occupies Palestinian lands, kills women & children & imprisons Palestinians in their own land,” he wrote. “Lies and pressure will not hide your crimes.