No Israel gas transit via Turkey: Ankara

Ankara has rejected requests from its private firms to allow the transit of natural gas produced in Israel through Turkey to Europe, says Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz, Press TV reports.

Yildiz noted that private firms have proposed plans to carry Israeli natural gas to Europe via Turkish territory.

“Had not nine of our nationals been murdered, there could be major developments in the energy distribution in the Mediterranean Sea. [Then] we would not have rejected the demand by private firms,” he said on Friday.

Yildiz was referring to an Israeli attack on a Gaza-bound flotilla on May 30, 2010 that killed nine Turkish nationals.

The Israeli attack, which drew worldwide condemnation, severely damaged ties between Turkey and Israel.

Turkey has repeatedly called on Israel to apologize for the attack and pay compensation to the families of the victims, warning that Ankara-Tel Aviv relations will not normalize if Israel fails to do so.

Tel Aviv has refused to apologize to Turkey over the deadly raid.

( / 15.10.2011)

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