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EU hails decision by Turkiye, Israel to restore full diplomatic relations

Israeli President Isaac Herzog (L) and his Turkish counterpart Tayyip Erdogan shake hands during a press conference in Ankara, on March 9, 2022. (Photo by AFP) (Photo by STR/AFP via Getty Images)
Israeli President Isaac Herzog (L) and his Turkish counterpart Tayyip Erdogan shake hands during a press conference in Ankara, on March 9, 2022 [STR/AFP via Getty Images]

The European Union on Thursday hailed the recent Turkish-Israeli rapprochement, Anadolu News Agency reports.

"I welcome the announcement between Turkiye and Israel to restore full diplomatic ties," EU Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood, Oliver Varhelyi, said on Twitter.

The remarks came after Turkiye and Israel announced on Wednesday that they will resume diplomatic relations and mutually reappoint ambassadors and consuls.

Varhelyi called the agreement "another milestone strengthening bilateral relations, stabilising the region and fostering prosperity."

"The EU is ready to support establishing new grounds of cooperation," he added.

READ: Israel, Turkiye announce normalisation agreement, return of ambassadors

In his speech announcing the restoration of diplomatic ties with Israel, Turkish Foreign Minister, Mevlut Cavusoglu, stressed that Turkiye will "continue to defend the rights of Palestine, Jerusalem and Gaza, and it is important that our messages are conveyed directly to Tel Aviv at the ambassador level."

On Wednesday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had a phone talk with Israeli Prime Minister, Yair Lapid, to discuss bilateral relations and regional issues.

Erdogan said he supports the development of cooperation and dialogue between the two countries built on a sustainable basis and respect for mutual sensitivities.

He also expressed his satisfaction with the progress achieved in relations under a framework agreed on during recent visits to Turkiye by Lapid and Israeli President, Isaac Herzog.

Herzog's visit to Turkiye in March, followed by reciprocal visits by both countries' foreign ministers, contributed to easing relations after more than a decade of tensions.

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