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Turkey's Erdogan says UN has 'collapsed' in the face of Gaza violence

File photo of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Photograph: (Reuters)

Reuters Delhi, India May 17, 2018, 03.53 PM (IST)

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday that the United Nations had "collapsed" in the face of events in Gaza where Israeli forces killed 60 Palestinian protesters on Monday as the United States relocated its Israel embassy to Jerusalem.

Turkey has been among the most vocal critics of the Israeli use of deadly force against protesters at the Gaza border and of the US decision to open its new embassy in Jerusalem. It called for an emergency meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Istanbul on Friday.

Speaking at a dinner on the first day of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, Erdogan said the majority of the international community had failed to react to the events in Gaza.

The events in Gaza have also sparked a diplomatic row between Turkey and Israel, with both countries expelling each other's senior diplomats on Tuesday.

The dispute appears to mark the worst diplomatic crisis between the two regional powers since Israeli marines stormed an aid ship to enforce a naval blockade of Gaza in 2010, killing 10 Turkish activists and prompting a downgrade in diplomatic ties that lasted until 2016.

Erdogan, who described Monday's bloodshed as genocide earlier this week, said Turkey had launched initiatives to get the issue onto the UN General Assembly's agenda. He said Ankara was pressing members of the UN Security Council to be more active.

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