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Is Turkey Hamas' new headquarters?

Turkey’s pernicious foreign policy could generate unintended consequences with Hamas, Israel and the West.
Hamas' Gaza leader Ismail Haniyeh (C) flashes a victory sign to his supporters in front of the cruise liner Mavi Marmara in Istanbul January 2, 2012.  REUTERS/Osman Orsal (TURKEY - Tags: POLITICS TRANSPORT TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY) - RTR2VT9X

On Aug. 20, at the Association of Muslim Scholars conference in Istanbul, senior Hamas official Salach al-Aruri accepted the long-denied charges that Hamas had kidnapped the three Israeli teenagers on June 12. Their bodies were found at the end of June. From the very beginning, Israel said that the kidnapping and murders were carried out by Hamas.

All along, Hamas has denied its involvement vehemently. Al-Monitor’s Palestine Pulse reported that many Palestinians believe Israelis “orchestrated the kidnapping and murders” to justify an attack on the Gaza Strip. The same conspiracy theory was widely supported in Turkey, too. It is safe to assume that the majority of Turks do not believe the news of Aruri’s acceptance of involvement despite the video recording. Most Turkish pundits are convinced Hamas had no direct involvement, and that the kidnapping and murders of the three teenagers was nothing but an Israeli conspiracy.

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