Ankara fiercely opposed the referendum and has threatened sanctions against the region, reflecting its worries about its own sizeable Kurdish minority.
During a televised speech, Erdogan claimed that Turkey had been saddened to see some Iraqi Kurds acclaiming the independence referendum with Israeli flags.
“This shows one thing, that this administration (in northern Iraq) has a history with Mossad, they are hand-in-hand together,” Erdogan said in Erzurum, in eastern Turkey.
Iran and Iraq’s central government in Baghdad have also have expressed alarm over the referendum last Monday, and have refused to recognise its validity.
Israel has been the only country to openly support an independent Kurdish state, with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu backing “the legitimate efforts of the Kurdish people to attain a state of its own.”
Erdogan has derided the Israeli support.
“Are you aware of what you are doing?” Erdogan said in an appeal to Iraqi Kurdish leaders. “Only Israel supports you.”
Erdogan on Tuesday had said Israel should “review” its support for Iraqi Kurdish independence, and warned that the Jewish state’s support for the bid could negatively affect diplomatic ties between Ankara and Jerusalem.
“If they do not review, we cannot take a lot of steps that we were about to take with Israel,” Erdogan was quoted by the official Anadolu news agency as saying. “It is not possible for us to take steps with those who do not see Turkey as a playmaker in the region. Turkey is a playmaker in the region,” he said.
Despite years of close security and intelligence ties, Israel’s diplomatic relations with Turkey have been frosty under Erdogan’s rule, reaching a nadir after Israeli troops raided the Gaza-bound Mavi Marmara ship and killed nine Turkish nationals, who attacked them violently aboard, in May 2010.
Although Jerusalem and Ankara struck a reconciliation deal in August 2016 after years of severed ties following the flotilla incident, Erdogan has continued to publicly chastise Israel in harsh terms over its policies towards the Palestinians and the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.
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