The Turkish government has prevented Israel's representatives from attending the Global Counter-Terrorism Forum in Istanbul. The move was hailed by Izzat Al-Resheq, a member of the Hamas political bureau. "This is part of the development of Turkey's role in the region and a sign of the international solidarity against the Israelis," he commented.
Turkey's successful blocking of Israel, added Al-Reshaq, came about after Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan lobbied the US organisers. According to Israeli television's Channel II, Turkey's tense relations with Israel have affected Tel Aviv's relations with its allies.
Twenty nine countries attended the conference, including 10 from the Arab and Islamic world, as well as Russia, China, India, the G8 and the EU.