Gul to Israel: "Turkey is ready to facilitate peace negotiations"
Turkey is ready to use its full capacity to facilitate constructive Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, President Abdullah Gul said yesterday in a guest New York Times column. "The plight of the Palestinians has been a root cause of unrest and conflict in the region and is being used as a pretext for extremism in other corners of the world," wrote Gul in his column, called "The Revolution's Missing Peace." He said Israel, more than any other country in the region, needs to adapt to the new political climate emerging in the Middle East. Gul also said Israel need not fear the new political makeup of the region, since democratic neighbors would be the ultimate assurance of its security. "Sooner or later, the Middle East will become democratic, and by definition a democratic government should reflect the true wishes of its people," he said. Gul also called on Israeli leaders to approach the peace process strategically rather than resorting to short-sighted tactical maneuvers.