Erdogan meets Hamas chief amid Israel deal reports
raid on twelve Chinese fishing vessels working in the lagoon, disturbing and harassing their operations, and even forcibly boarding one vessel and arresting the fishermen. The arrested Chinese fishermen were stripped to the waist and exposed to the scorching sun on the deck. China was thus forced to take countermeasures. Both sides engaged in a tense standoff till June 3, when all the Philippine ships had left the lagoon at the island. To prevent further moves by the Philippines, China sent marine surveillance ship for long-term deployment in the waters surrounding Huangyan Island, putting the Island under its control.
On January 22, 2013, the Philippines initiated an arbitral proceedings against China at the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea. Shortly after this announcement, China’s Foreign Ministry made multiple official responses: “The Philippines and the Arbitral Tribunal have abused relevant procedures and forced ahead with the arbitration, disregarding the fact that the subject matter of the arbitration involves territorial sovereignty and maritime delimitation and related matters, deliberately evading the declaration on optional exceptions made by China in 2006 under Article 298 of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea”, stating “China does not accept the arbitration initiated by the Philippines” and therefore “will not participate in the proceedings”.
Obviously, China disagrees with the Philippines which applied for arbitration on account that its consultations and negotiations with China reached an impasse. The fact is that ever since the Huangyan Incident, the Philippines refused to have any serious dialogue with China, let alone negotiations, nor did they consult the other DOC parties. ANKARA—Turkish Presi- dent Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday the leader of radical Palestinian group Hamas for unscheduled talks following reports Ankara was close to agreeing a deal on normalizing ties with Israel.
Erdogan received the Doha-based Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal, whose group rules the Gaza Strip, at the Ottoman-era Yildiz Palace in Istanbul, the official Anadolu Agency reported, quoting presidential sources.
Turkish press reports have said Israel and Turkey could hold final talks on normalizing ties on Sunday but this had yet to be confirmed.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Thursday there was a “large possibility” the negotiations would take place by the end of this month.—Agencies