President Erdoğan welcomes Hamas's ceasefire acceptance, hopes for similar response from Israel

Turkish President Erdoğan stated that he welcomed Hamas's decision to accept a ceasefire in Gaza, stating that this decision was in line with Ankara's recommendation. He also expressed his hope that Israel would follow suit.

Duvar English & Reuters

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on May 6 that he welcomed the decision by militant group Hamas to accept a ceasefire in Gaza, which he said was made in line with Ankara's suggestion, adding he hopes Israel would do the same.

Turkey has denounced Israel's assault on Gaza, called for an immediate ceasefire, halted all trade with Israel, and announced its decision to join South Africa's application for Israel to be tried for genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

Speaking after a cabinet meeting, Erdoğan called on Western countries to increase pressure on Israel's leadership to accept the ceasefire. Ankara has repeatedly complained of what it calls the unconditional support given to Israel by the West, particularly the United States.

"We welcome the statement by Hamas that they accepted the ceasefire with our suggestion. Now, Israel must take the same step," he said.

Shortly after, Erdoğan said on social media platform X that he had spoken by phone to Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh to discuss the militant group's decision on the ceasefire and the ongoing efforts to end the fighting in Gaza.

"During the call, in which I stated that I found it positive for Hamas to take such a decision with Turkey's suggestion, we emphasized that Israel must take a step for a lasting ceasefire too," Erdoğan said on X.

Erdoğan hosted Haniyeh and a delegation from Hamas, which he has called a "liberation movement," in Istanbul last month.

Turkey says Israel's Rafah operation is another war crime

The Israeli operation in Gaza's Rafah city a day after Hamas accepted a ceasefire deal marks another war crime by Israel, Turkish Vice President Cevdet Yılmaz said on May 7.

"By carrying out a ground attack on Rafah, just a day after Hamas approved Qatar and Egypt's proposal for a ceasefire deal, Israel has added another to the war crimes it has committed in Palestinian territories since October 7," Yılmaz said on social media platform X.

Ankara would continue working for the Israeli leadership to be legally punished, he added.

Israel's ground attacks on Gaza's Rafah city, a day after Hamas accepted a ceasefire proposal, show its government is not acting in good faith, Turkey's foreign ministry spokesman said on Tuesday, adding Israel must immediately withdraw from the city.

In a post on social media platform X, spokesman Öncü Keçeli said Israel's operation came "amid such a positive development towards ending the destruction and massacre in Gaza", and said the status quo in Rafah and the border crossing must be restored without further delay.

"An offensive on Rafah will affect not only the region but the whole world. Israel must immediately withdraw from the Gaza side of the Rafah border crossing," Keçeli said.

Israel has killed at least 35,232 Palestinians to date and recently launched another military operation in the city of Rafah, where hundreds of thousands of Palestinians sought refuge following Israel's intense carpet bombing in the Gaza Strip.