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Turkey, South Africa recall Israel envoys over Gaza protest massacre Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Turkey, South Africa recall Israel envoys over Gaza protest massacre

Most of the 59 Gazans killed on Monday were shot by Israeli snipers [Getty]

Date of publication: 15 May, 2018

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Turkey and South Africa have recalled their ambassadors to Israel after 60 Palestinian protesters were killed by Israeli forces in the bloodiest day in Gaza since the 2014 war.

Turkey and South Africa have recalled their ambassadors to Israel after 60 Palestinian protesters were killed by Israeli snipers in the bloodiest day in Gaza since the 2014 war.

Turkey's deputy prime minister said on Monday that Ankara had recalled envoys in Tel Aviv and Washington for consultations, state-run Anadolu Agency  reported.

"Today, will go down in the history as Bloody Monday for Muslims and Islamic countries," Bekir Bozdag said.

Bozdag declared three days of mourning in solidarity with the slain protesters.

South Africa also recalled its ambassador to Israel on Monday, the country's foreign ministry said in a statement on Monday.

"Given the indiscriminate and grave manner of the latest Israeli attack, the South African government has taken a decision to recall Ambassador Sisa Ngombane," the statement said.

"The victims were taking part in a peaceful protest against the provocative inauguration of the US embassy in Jerusalem," it said. The country condemned the "violent aggression carried out by Israeli armed forces".

Palestinian group Fatah has hailed the recalls as a "strong message of support for the Palestinian people".

Fresh protests are expected on Tuesday a day after Israeli forces killed dozens of Palestinians in protests along the Gaza border against the US embassy opening in Jerusalem.

Palestinians on Tuesday will mark al-Nakba - or "the catastrophe" - commemorating the more than 700,000 Palestinians who were expelled in the 1948 war surrounding Israel's creation.

It comes a day after the US transferred its Israel embassy from Tel Aviv to the disputed city of Jerusalem, in a move that infuriated Palestinians and the wider international community.

Most of the 60 Gazans killed on Monday were shot by Israeli snipers, Gaza's health ministry said. At least 2,400 others were wounded.

The massacre has been widely condemned by the international community and human rights groups.

At least 113 Palestinians have been killed in a campaign of protests along the Gaza border since 30 March, the vast majority by Israeli snipers.

No Israelis have been killed and only one soldier has been reported wounded during that time.

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