BDS Turkey statement: What’s being discussed with the Zionists?

Turkey begins discussions to normalize relations with the Zionist state in the immediate wake of President Erdoğan’s meetings with Zionist organizations in the United States


It appears that the normalization process between Turkey and Israel has entered a new phase, with media outlets from both countries confirming a new stage in the talks on 7 April.

Likewise, it has become clear that normalization has become an official policy for both sides, with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s meetings with “Jewish organizations” last week during a visit to the United States indicative of this process.

It must be emphasized that these organizations are members of the Zionist lobby and not civil society organizations representing the American Jewish community through the prism of religious or minority rights. One of the prominent lobby organizations that participated in the joint meetings was AIPAC, whose fundamental policies revolve around “Israel’s security” and which exerts efforts to direct American foreign policy in a neo-con direction. Similarly, the ADL is known for its pro-Israeli propaganda activities. While the Conference of Presidents has previously attracted attention for its efforts to promote Israel’s interests at the United Nations, the World Jewish Congress is known as a group that encourages Zionist immigration to Palestine.

Erdoğan’s U.S. visit appears to have provided an opportunity for Turkish foreign policy to be reoriented in accordance with the lines set by Washington; the meetings with the aforementioned organizations are particularly indicative of this development.

The fact that several media outlets and civil society organizations, which have scored political points and gained prestige by appearing to be pro-Palestinian, displayed absolutely no reaction to these steps and meetings – which occurred during Palestinian Land Day, when the struggle is accentuated for the return of the stolen territory – denotes their approval of the government’s policies.

We, however, demand that the government explain to the public what it discussed with members of the Zionist lobby in the U.S. while reiterating our categorical and principled opposition to the anticipated new phase in the “normalization” process between Turkey and Israel.

We are duly providing notice that we will intensify our struggle to halt this process.

We call on the entire Turkish public to oppose this process and join in the creation of a web of principled solidarity with the Palestinian people.

BDS Turkey

8 April 2016