Turkish, Israeli Diplomats Explore Hopes for Relations-Source

Israel held unannounced diplomatic level talks with Turkey on Monday to explore prospects, after Turkish polls, of restoring an alliance that was once central to U.S. Middle East policy but has soured dramatically under Turkish leader Tayyip Erdogan.
The Islamist-rooted AK Party founded by Erdogan, who accused Israel last year of having "surpassed Hitler in barbarism" through attacks on Palestinian territories, lost its overall majority in a June 7 vote for the first time since taking power in 2002. It must now seek a coalition partners for government.
Erdogan's years in full control of foreign and domestic policy saw virtual collapse of what had been Israel's closest alliance with a Muslim state, encompassing the military and intelligence sectors. The killing of 10 pro-Palestinian Turks by Israeli commandos on a ship that tried to break its Gaza blockade in 2010 marked a low point.
An Israeli official told Reuters on condition of anonymity that Dore Gold, a Netanyahu confidant who was named director-general of Israel's Foreign Ministry last month, had met his counterpart Feridun Sinirlioglu in Rome on Monday.



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