Turkey and Israel have had a long history of tensions, especially during escalations with Hamas. However, recent events have led to new heights in the conduct of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. In a surprising move, a large flag factory in Istanbul refused to print Israeli and IDF cone flags, despite an order from businessman Ronnie Miley. This refusal marked the first time that an employee at the factory had openly expressed opposition to printing Israeli flags.
The incident took place just three weeks after the Turkish government decided to remove Israel from its list of export destination countries. This decision effectively stopped encouraging people, subsidizing trade, and supporting businesses that operate with Israel. In addition, it served as a clear message to Turkish business owners that if they get involved in trade with Israel, the state will not help them.
Earlier, the Turkish Ministry of Commerce published a false anti-Semitic announcement that “trade with Israel is not with the Jewish region of Israel.” This lie was followed by more baseless claims that “trade with Israel is done for the sake of 2.2 million Israeli citizens of Arab origin and those who live under Israeli occupation in the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem.” On behalf of the Turkish Ministry of Commerce, headed by Minister Omer Bulat, who is a close associate of Erdogan, this announcement was made. It was also reported that “in total, 8 million Palestinians live on the land of Palestine and 7.2 million Jews live on the land of Israel.” All products destined for Palestine must pass through Israeli customs – and are transported there under The name ‘Israel’”.
An unusual event took place about a week and a half ago in Gebza, in the suburbs of Istanbul when an armed man took over the P&G (Procter & Gamble) factory and took seven hostages while stating that “this is an Israeli factory.” The event ended without casualties but all these events together show how political tensions between Turkey and Israel are already affecting economic ties between