Turkish president Erdogan mediates for Israeli hostages held by Hamas

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has entered into talks with Hamas in an effort to secure the release of Israeli hostages taken during a recent attack by the Palestinian group. A high-ranking Turkish official, speaking anonymously, disclosed Erdogan’s directive for the negotiations. Turkey, known for its historical connections with Hamas, is actively involved in diplomatic endeavors to mediate the conflict stemming from Hamas’ unexpected assault on Israel.

Erdogan’s commitment to this initiative was demonstrated through his discussions with regional leaders. He expressed Ankara’s readiness to mediate and facilitate a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian crisis during recent talks with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune.

A Turkish official shed light on the negotiations, stating, “Turkey is engaged in discussions concerning the civilian prisoners held by Hamas.” However, specific details about the talks were not disclosed.

Turkey has consistently backed the Palestinian cause and advocated for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The country houses members of Hamas and has been working on improving its strained relationship with Israel, primarily through energy cooperation.

Amid escalating tensions in the region, Turkey has called for restraint and stressed the importance of safeguarding civilians on both sides. Ankara has also expressed concerns about the conflict’s potential to escalate further, emphasizing that regional peace hinges on the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.

In response to the crisis, President Erdogan strongly condemned Israel’s actions in Gaza, labeling them a “massacre.” He highlighted the adverse effects of the blockade, including disruptions to essential services like water and electricity, and mourned the loss of civilian lives.

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