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Israel-Palestine war: Turkey proposes guarantorship system to end conflict

Turkish foreign minister says security guarantors could put an end to vicious circle of violence between Israel and Palestine and focus on the two-state solution
Turkey's Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan during a joint press conference with the Egyptian foreign minister in Cairo on 14 October 2023 (AFP)
Turkey's Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan during a joint press conference with the Egyptian foreign minister in Cairo on 14 October 2023 (AFP)
By Ragip Soylu in Istanbul

Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan has said Ankara is proposing a draft plan of the guarantor system for the Israel-Palestine conflict to put an end to the vicious circle of violence through the decades and reach a two-state solution. 

Fidan told journalists in a press briefing on Monday that states from the region, including Turkey, could function as permanent mediators in the conflict and keep the parties in check over possible violations of bilateral deals. 

“We suggest that the countries that will be guarantors to the Palestinian side must be from the region. This includes Turkey,” he said, according to a report by Hurriyet newspaper on Tuesday. “Other countries should be guarantors for Israel.” 

Fidan is on a regional tour to help efforts to reach a ceasefire and facilitate the release of the civilians kept by Hamas in Gaza. He recently visited Cairo and met the Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. He was scheduled to visit Saudi Arabia later this week, a Turkish source told Middle East Eye. 

Fidan also held several phone calls with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken to try to find a formula to ensure the release of civilians held by both Hamas and Israel, the source added.

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Israel's siege and relentless bombing campaign in Gaza is pushing the blockaded Palestinian enclave towards a "human catastrophe" in the second week of the war between Israel and Hamas. 

The conflict erupted on 7 October when Hamas launched a surprise assault on Israel and broke through its formidable barrier fence, shocking what is arguably the strongest and best equipped military force in the Middle East.

Israel-Palestine war live: Scores killed in southern Gaza after another night of Israeli bombing
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Using drones, fighters destroyed key surveillance and communications towers along the border with Gaza, and under the cover of rockets overran an area of more than 70 sq km. More than 1300 Israelis were killed.

Fidan said that if Israel wants permanent peace in the region and to ensure its security, then Palestinians must have a state. He added that Ankara’s guarantor system offer was just one alternative among many and Turkey is ready to consider others if they come with better options. 

Under the formula explained by Fidan, guarantors of both parties will be constantly in action to ensure that the agreements reached are not broken. 

“Unless peace is guaranteed, the state of Israel and its people in the region will never feel safe,” he said. “It will constantly feel the need to mistreat others and use violence in order to keep herself safe. This spiral will constantly rotate on its own.” 

In a seperate statement on Tuesday, Fidan said that a leaders' summit will convene in Cairo on Saturday with regional countries attending to discuss the latest round of fighting. 

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