Australia must support Turkey’s mediation offer to prevent Palestinian massacre

Oct 15, 2023
Recep Tayyip Erdogan (2020-03-05)

On 11 October President Erdogan of Turkey came out and made a speech offering himself as a mediator in the current conflict. The first step in any mediation process had to be an immediate ceasefire on the part of both sides. It is time for Australia to accept its independent responsibility and to support Erdogan’s proposal.

Erdogan said that Israel’s repressive policies towards the Palestinians lay at the heart of the conflict. His position is that the conflict can only be resolved by two independent States. He said that the ultimate solution to the conflict will only be possible with the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with the 1967 borders and East Jerusalem as its capital.

He might have added that such a resolution would accord with what international law demands.

The proposed mediation would obviously address other peripheral issues such as hostages, reparations, etc.

Given the above, I address these questions to Prime Minister Albanese and Foreign Minister Wong. The questions are:

  • Given that you express support for a two State solution, do you not think that it would be appropriate for Australia to come out in support of Erdogan’s initiative?
  • And given that Israel has expressed a refusal to consider any Palestinian state, regardless of borders, do you not accept that it would be a waste of time to link the proposal to negotiations between the two States?
  • And regardless of what international law demands, does the government in any event consider that there would be a better border than the one proposed by Erdogan?

I am aware that members of the ALP caucus, as well as some members of cabinet, read Pearls & Irritations. Given that, I am confident that these questions will be brought to the attention of either or both the Prime Minister or Foreign Minister. In the event, can I say that a prompt response would be appreciated.

Might I be permitted to make an observation. The kowtowing of our present government to the US/Israeli lobby is a matter of real concern to progressive Australians. I am aware that many lifelong Labour voters, like me until a year or so ago, are seriously thinking of ending their support for the ALP, and looking elsewhere. At the moment that can only be the Greens and suitable independents. The issue addressed in this article is one of the prime reasons.

Can I conclude by saying that it is time for Australia to accept its independent responsibility. To support Erdogan’s proposal, and to combine that support with recognition of The State of Palestine, may go a long way to save the world from the current path that is taking it to disaster.

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