Netanyahu and Erdogan trade insults in escalating war of words


JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan an “anti-Semitic dictator” who is “obsessed with Israel” as the two leaders continue to trade insults.

Erdogan in an address on Saturday to the Turkey Youth Foundation said: “The Jews in Israel kick people laying on the ground. In fact, Jews don’t kick men but also women and children when they fall on the ground.” He added that Muslims will “teach them a lesson.”

Netanyahu responded Saturday evening in a statement: “Erdogan – the occupier of Northern Cyprus, whose army massacres women and children in Kurdish villages, inside and outside Turkey – should not preach to Israel.”

Turkey’s Foreign Minister Nevlut Cavsoglu in a tweet on Sunday added to the war on words, calling Netanyahu a “cold-blooded killer of modern times.”

Netanyahu responded Sunday during a public event and in a tweet.  “I was just exposed to the daily trolling of the anti-Semitic dictator Erdogan,” he said. “He is obsessed with Israel. He knows what a moral army is and he knows what a genuine democracy is, as opposed to an army that massacres women and children in Kurdish villages and a state which, to my regret, is becoming more dictatorial day by day.”

He also wrote: “But there has been an improvement. Erdogan used to attack me every two hours and now it is every six hours.”

Erdogan has frequently compared the Israeli military’s actions against the Palestinians to the Nazis’ actions against Jews during the Holocaust.

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