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$20 million recompense for Gaza flotilla raid

September 30, 2016

A Turkish official has said Israel has paid millions of dollars in damages for the storming of a Gaza-bound flotilla in 2010. Relations between the two countries hit the skids following the violent raid.

Mavi Marmara flotilla flagship boat
Image: picture alliance/abaca

The $20 million (17.8 million euros) in compensation were transferred to an account managed by the Turkish Justice Ministry, a Turkish Foreign Ministry official told the AFP news agency on Friday, on condition of anonymity.

The money is intended for the families of the Turkish victims who were killed during the May 2010 raid on the pro-Palestinian flotilla by Israeli commandos, broadcaster CNN Turk reported.

The incident saw Israeli commandos seize a pro-Palestinian aid flotilla that was bound for Gaza.

Ten Turks died during the raid and relations between the two former allies went into a tailspin.

The Turkish official told AFP the government would pass on the compensation money to the families of the victims in due course. 

In return for the compensation, Turkey waived its right to seek legal redress against the Israeli soldiers involved in the raid.

The two neighbors sought to repair strained ties over the summer. Turkey made three key demands, including compensation, a return of both countries' ambassadors - who were recalled following the raid - and an easing of a blockade on the Gaza Strip.

Although the blockade remains in place, the Ankara government has resumed delivery of humanitarian aid to the Palestinians through Israeli ports.

A Turkish official said Friday that a new ambassador to Israel will be appointed "soon."

mm/sms (AFP, dpa)