Israel names Eitan Naeh as new ambassador to Turkey

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Eitan Naeh

Senior diplomat Eitan Naeh was named on Tuesday to be Israel’s first ambassador to Ankara since a reconciliation agreement with Turkey was concluded, israelnationalnews.com reported.

Currently deputy ambassador to Britain, Naeh has served as the ambassador to Azerbaijan and a policy advisor in the Prime Minister’s Office. He was Israel’s general consul in Ankara between 1993 and 1997.

The appointment of the new ambassador came after Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz’s visit Turkey on Oct. 13. It was the first ministerial visit to Turkey since the eruption of a 2010 crisis in ties.

İbrahim Kalın, a spokesman for President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, said on Oct. 13 that Turkey and Israel would appoint ambassadors to their respective embassies within 10 days.

The ties between Turkey and Israel had been tense since 2010, when the Israeli navy killed nine Turkish and one Turkish-American pro-Palestinian activists who were part of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla heading to Gaza to deliver aid.

Turkey demanded an official apology from Israel, compensation for the families of those killed and the lifting of Israel’s Gaza blockade.

Turkey and Israel normalized relations in August after the Turkish Parliament approved a deal in June for Israel to pay $20 million in compensation to victims on board the Mavi Marmara.

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