5 June 2012
A Turkish court will hold on November 6 the first hearing of a trial against four Israeli commanders held responsible for a deadly flotilla raid in 2010.
The date was announced by the Istanbul court after it unanimously approved an indictment by Turkish prosecutors against four top Israeli commanders who were on duty when the "Mavi Marmara" aid ship bound for Gaza came under attack of Israeli troops in May 2010.
A prosecutor in Turkey demanded, on May 23, nine aggravated life imprisonment sentences for four top Israeli generals each including the country's chief of military staff over the killing of nine Turks aboard a vessel in a 2010 Israeli raid on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla.
The 144-page indictment prepared by Istanbul Prosecutor Mehmet Akif Ekinci sought life imprisonment sentences for former Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) Chief of General Staff Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, Naval Forces commander Vice Admiral Eliezer Marom, Israel's military intelligence chief Major General Amos Yadlin and Air Forces Intelligence head Brigadier General Avishai Levi for their involvement in the attack on the Mavi Marmara, the chief vessel in the Free Gaza convoy.
The incident brought Turkish-Israeli relations to a historic low.
Ankara demanded a formal apology from Israel for the killings and that Israel lifted the Gaza blockade. Turkey has also expelled the Israeli ambassador and suspended military agreements it penned with the country.