NEWS IN ENGLISHSecurity&Defense

Gaza crisis a testament to collapse of current global order, says Turkish President Erdogan

Gaza crisis is a testament to the collapse of the current global order, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday, pointing to conflicts in Syria, Yemen, Libya, and Ukraine.

Speaking at the Antalya Diplomacy Forum, Erdogan said the current century has become an era of crises as the rules-based international order has lost meaning, becoming „no more than a slogan.”

„The current international system, devoid of fundamental concepts such as solidarity, justice, and trust, cannot fulfill even its minimum responsibilities,” he added in his speech at the event, held on Türkiye’s southern Mediterranean coast.

On Israel’s ongoing offensive in the Gaza Strip, which has killed over 30,000 Palestinians so far, he said Western powers that have been unconditional in their support for Tel Aviv are „complicit in the bloodshed with their hypocritical policies.”

„What is happening in Gaza is not a conflict, it is a genocide because even wars have their own rules,” he said, adding: „I’m talking about treacherous, dishonorable targeting, barbarity that lacks any sense of honor.”

Erdogan pointed to the brutal killing of civilians, including women and children, in Gaza, adding that belief in justice and global order had also been tarnished.

He underlined the „essential” need to establish an independent, sovereign Palestinian state with territorial integrity and its capital in East Jerusalem based on the 1967 borders.

„The global community can only repay its debt to the Palestinian people through the establishment of a Palestinian state,” he added.

He said Türkiye is „following Israel’s barbarism with deep concern,” saying he was referring to „dastardly barbarism that targets civilians waiting in line for aid.”

The president also underlined the rising civilian death toll in Gaza.

„As a result of Israel’s deliberate attacks targeting civilian settlements, 30,000 Gazans, mostly children and women, have been martyred so far. More than 70,000 Palestinians have been injured and approximately 2 million people have been forced to leave their homes,” he said.

Erdogan also sharply criticized international organizations over what he called their „weakness and dysfunction.”

„We have seen how weak and dysfunctional international institutions such as the United Nations Security Council, whose duty is to ensure global peace, the European Union and others, are,” he said.

Recalling the death of Hind Rajab

Erdogan also recalled the death of 6-year-old Hind Rajab under dire circumstances.

„Vehicle of her family members was shot at by Israeli forces while they were looking for a safe place,” he said, referring to the Gazan child who pleaded with Red Crescent officials to rescue her from a car she was trapped in with her relatives – all of whom were killed by Israeli army gunfire.

The child pleaded with Palestinian Red Crescent officials to rescue her before her lifeless body was also found.

„It is the story of nearly 15,000 innocent children killed in Gaza,” Erdogan added.

Erdogan also touched upon Türkiye’s efforts for Gaza, mentioning up to 37,000 tons of humanitarian aid sent to the region, diplomatic negotiations, and the transfer of more than 900 Gaza patients – including their companions – to Türkiye.

Rising racism, Islamophobia and xenophobia

Erdogan said that racism, Islamophobia, and xenophobia are on the rise in many parts of the world.

„Racism, Islamophobia, and xenophobia are spreading like a plague in society in many parts of the world. The reality we face is this; the 21st century, which we hope will be the century of prosperity, tranquility, peace, and freedom, is, contrary to expectations, increasingly turning into an age of crisis,” he said.

„The ‘rule-based international order’ that everyone talks about is losing its meaning and weight and is no more than a slogan. The current international system, which lacks basic concepts such as solidarity, justice, and trust, cannot even fulfill its most basic responsibilities,” Erdogan added.

The president also touched upon the difficulties Türkiye is facing about conflicts in its region.

„Türkiye is one of the countries most affected by crises, due to its geographical location, human and cultural ties, and international relations. The overwhelming majority of the conflicts, tensions, wars, and risks that occupy humanity’s agenda are experienced in our immediate geography. For example, we have been fighting for 40 years against terror, which many countries have only been facing for the last 5-10 years,” he said, referring to Türkiye’s decades-long fight against the PKK terrorist group.

„We are the only NATO ally that fought on the ground against the Daesh terrorist group and defeated it,” he added.

Erdogan said that income inequality between countries has increased exponentially and wars are much bloodier and more destructive than before.

The Turkish leader also emphasized the importance of diplomacy in finding a solution to the Gaza crisis and other global issues.

„Let’s just give diplomacy a chance,” he said, adding that countries should not „pursue maximalist goals.”

„As we always say, it is not possible to make peace with clenched fists,” he said.

„It is very possible to make progress with diplomacy and dialogue wherever there is good intention, will and determination,” Erdogan stated.