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Erdoğan says ‘spirit of United Nations dead in Gaza’

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Wednesday hit out at the United Nations and called on the “Islamic world” to react after the latest deadly Israeli strikes in Gaza, Agence France-Presse reported.

“The UN cannot even protect its own staff. What are you waiting for to act? The spirit of the United Nations is dead in Gaza,” Erdoğan told lawmakers from his Justice and Development Party (AKP).

Erdoğan’s comments came as the UN Security Council met to discuss a deadly Israeli attack on a displacement camp west of Rafah on Tuesday that killed 21 people, according to a civil defense official in Hamas-run Gaza.

The Turkish president also hit out at fellow Muslim-majority countries for failing to take common action over the Israeli strike.

“I have some words to say to the Islamic world: What are you waiting for to take a common decision?” Erdoğan, who leads a Muslim-majority country of 85 million people, told lawmakers from his party.

“Israel is not just a threat to Gaza but to all of humanity,” he said.

“No state is safe as long as Israel does not follow international law and does not feel bound by international law,” Erdoğan added, repeating an accusation that Israel is committing “genocide” in Gaza.

The Gaza Strip is suffering a humanitarian crisis caused by Israel’s military campaign against Hamas that has been going on since October 7, with the United Nations and aid agencies warning of impending famine.

The war started with Hamas’s unprecedented October 7 attack on Israel that resulted in the death of roughly 1,200 people, mostly civilians, and some 250 people taken hostage.

Israel’s retaliatory offensive against Hamas has killed at least 36,000 people in Gaza, mostly women and children, according to the Gaza health ministry, and has devastated the Gaza Strip.

Turkey, one of the most outspoken critics of the Israeli war on Gaza, accuses the Israeli government of committing “war crimes” and “genocide” in the enclave. In early May Turkey’s Trade Ministry announced that it was suspending all trade with Israel until it allows aid to enter Gaza unhindered during its offensive against Hamas militants.

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