Turkey rejects Israeli decision to form flotilla investigation committee
Israel's cabinet on Monday approved the creation of an internal committee to probe its deadly raid on a Gaza Strip-bound aid flotilla, in a move dismissed by Turkey. The Israeli committee, which will include two foreign observers, was formed to conduct an investigation into the legal aspects of the operation in which Israeli commandos killed nine Turks and injured many more.
But Turkey rejected the move, saying it did not believe the Israeli panel would carry out an "impartial" probe of the raid. "We have no trust at all that Israel, a country that has carried out such an attack on a civilian convoy in international waters, will conduct an impartial investigation," Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu was quoted as saying by AFP.
Turkey wants the circumstances surrounding the May 31 raid to be investigated by a commission "under the direct control of the United Nations... an impartial one with the participation of Turkey and Israel," he added.
The Israeli committee, which will be headed by retired supreme court judge Yaakov Tirkel, will conduct an internal investigation into the legal aspects of the flotilla raid. Israel also named two international observers: Irish Nobel Peace Prize winner David Trimble and Ken Watkin, a former judge advocate general of the Canadian armed forces.
But Trimble and Watkin will not able "to vote in relation to the proceedings and conclusions of the commission." The two could also be denied access to documents or information if it was "almost certain to cause substantial harm to national security or to the state's foreign relations."