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Israel holds secret reconciliation meetings with Turkey: Report

Israel holds secret reconciliation meetings with Turkey: Report

Jerusalem: Foreign affairs ministry representatives from Israel and Turkey held secret high-level meetings to advance the suspended process of reconciliation, Israel Radio reported on Tuesday.

Israeli Foreign Affairs Director-General Dore Gold recently met with his Turkish counterpart in Rome, according to Kol Israel public radio, which called it the first meeting at that level since one year ago, when the two sides ended reconciliation dialogues.

Last July, Israel reduced its diplomatic presence in Turkey to a minimum in light of attacks on diplomatic missions in Ankara and Istanbul in protest of the Israeli military operation against Gaza Strip.

Israel then accused Turkey of failing to adequately protect the embassy and consular employees, calling it a "blatant violation of diplomatic regulations" and leading Israel to recall personnel home.

The disturbances originated in parallel with Ankara's condemnation of Israel for launching a ground offensive in the Gaza Strip on July 17, after 10 days of sea and air attacks.

Israel's Operation Protective Edge took place between July 8 and August 26, 2014, in which 2,251 Palestinians were killed (including 1,462 civilians and 551 children) while 67 Israeli soldiers were killed as well as six Israeli civilians.

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