‘100% Import Tariff’ – Smotrich Retaliates Over Türkiye Trade Ban with Israel

Israeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich and Turkish President Recip Tayyep Erdogan. (Design: Palestine Chronicle)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

The Turkish Ministry of Trade halted export and import transactions to Israel in early May, citing the “worsening humanitarian tragedy” in Gaza.

Israeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich has announced that Israel would abolish its free trade agreement with Türkiye and impose a 100 per cent tariff on imports in retaliation for Ankara’s decision earlier this month to halt exports to Israel.

“The tariff increase on imports from Türkiye is a suitable Zionist answer to (Turkish President) Erdogan,” Smotrich said in a statement on X on Thursday.

According to The Jerusalem Post, he submitted the plan for cabinet approval, “including the abolition of the Israel-Türkiye Free Trade Agreement, signed in 1996.”

Smotrich said Erdogan’s “announcement of the stoppage of imports to Israel constitutes a declaration of an economic boycott and a serious violation of international trade agreements to which Türkiye has committed.”

He added: “For too many years, the State of Israel struggled with Erdogan’s anti-Semitism. Not on my shift.”

Turkiye Halted All Trade Activities with Israel over Gaza Genocide – Report

‘Worsening Humanitarian Tragedy’

The Turkish Ministry of Trade halted export and import transactions to Israel in early May, citing the “worsening humanitarian tragedy” in Gaza.

“Türkiye will strictly and decisively implement these new measures until the Israeli Government allows an uninterrupted and sufficient flow of humanitarian aid to Gaza,” it reportedly said in a statement.

Last month the Trade Ministry announced restrictions on the export of a wide range of products to Israel until a ceasefire is declared in Gaza.

The restrictions, which came into effect soon after the announcement, applied to products from 54 categories, including steel, cement, iron, fertilizer, aviation fuel, construction equipment and products, and other materials.

‘Until Gaza Ceasefire’ – Türkiye Restricts Aid Exports to Israel 

ICJ Case

Smotrich said, “If at the end of Erdogan’s term, the citizens of Türkiye elect a leader who is sane and not a hater of Israel, it would be possible to return the trade route with Türkiye to the high road.”

He stressed that it was necessary to diversify Israel’s import sources “in order to create alternatives and reduce the dependence of the Israeli economy on imports from Türkiye.”

Ankara also announced its decision earlier this month to join South Africa in its case of genocide brought against Israel at the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

‘Political Decision’ – Türkiye to Join South Africa’s Case Against Israel at ICJ

Staggering Death Toll

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7.

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 35,303 Palestinians have been killed, and 79,261 wounded in Israel’s ongoing genocide in Gaza starting on October 7.

Moreover, at least 11,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip.

Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

The Israeli war has resulted in an acute famine, mostly in northern Gaza, resulting in the death of many Palestinians, mostly children.

GAZA LIVE BLOG: Gaza Death Toll Rises | ICJ Hears Israel’s Defense | FIFA Seeks Legal Advice on Israel’s Suspension – Day 224

The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba.

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire’.

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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1 Comment

  1. Smotrich is delusional and sick. I hope Russia picks up on this and increases its trade with Turkey, and that Turkey finally realizes that its future is not with the West.

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