Turkey on Monday urged Pope Francis to join Ankara in rallying the world to adopt sanctions against Israel for the “massacre” of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
The phone call between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Pope Francis came as Turkey continues its frantic diplomatic campaign to help halt the carnage that has claimed the lives of 197 Palestinians and ten Israelis since May 10.
Erdogan told Pope Francis that “Palestinians will continue to be subjected to a massacre unless the international community punishes Israel… with sanctions.”
The Pope’s messages were of “great importance to mobilize the Christian world and the international community”, the Turkish statement added.
Erdogan, who has been an ardent supporter of the Palestinian cause during his 18-year reign, has frequently condemned Israel’s conduct, labeling it “terrorism” last week.
He told the Pope on Monday that “all of humanity should be united against” Israel.
“The savagery caused by Israel threatens regional security,” he added.
A phone discussion between Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and his British colleague Dominic Raab on Monday was a part of Turkey’s quest for sanctions on Israel.
According to a Turkish foreign ministry source, Cavusoglu told Raab that it was “critical that the international community show a stronger reaction” to Israel’s assault.