by WorldTribune Staff, October 3, 2017
Israel and Mossad were not involved in Kurdistan’s independence referendum, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Oct. 1.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sept. 30 charged that the waving of Israeli flags by Iraqi Kurds during independence celebrations was proof of Mossad’s involvement.
“Regarding recent remarks about Israel and the people in Kurdistan,” Netanyahu said, “I understand why those who support Hamas want to see the Mossad everywhere that is uncomfortable for them. But Israel had no part in the Kurdish referendum, except for the deep, natural sympathy that the people of Israel have had for many years for the Kurdish people and their aspirations.”
Related: Fury from Turkey, Iran, Hizbullah after Kurdish independence vote, October 1, 2017
Turkey actively supports Hamas. Erdogan has met in Istanbul with top Hamas officials including Khaled Masha’al.
Erdogan, who adamantly opposed the Iraqi Kurdish vote, is concerned of the impact it may have on Turkey’s own large Kurdish population.
“Are you aware of what you are doing?” Erdogan said in an appeal to Iraqi Kurdish leaders. “Only Israel supports you.”
Last week, Erdogan threatened to halt steps being taken toward normalization with Israel if it does not end its support for an independent Kurdish state.
“If Israel does not reconsider its support for Kurdish independence, Turkey will not be able to take many steps we would have with Israel, too,” he said.
Israel and Turkey renewed full diplomatic relations at the end of last year.