POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Sep 12, 2011
ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey's prime minister has said Israel's raid on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla last year was "cause for war" but that his country showed "patience" and refrained from taking any action.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan told Al-Jazeera television in a recent interview that the Israeli attack that killed nine activists occurred in international waters and was therefore "unlawful." His comments were carried by Turkey's state-run Anatolia news agency late Sunday.
Erdogan said "It is a cause for war, but we decided to act in line with Turkey's grandeur and showed patience."
Israel insists its naval commandos acted in self-defense after being attacked by some of the activists.
A U.N. report into the raid said Israel's naval blockade was legitimate but that it used "excessive and unreasonable" force.