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Israel and Turkey agreed to deepen cooperation in the energy sector Thursday, taking a further step toward normalizing ties with the first Israeli ministerial visit to Turkey since a breakdown six years ago. Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz said he would welcome more involvement by Turkish firms in the Israeli energy sector, particularly in gas exploration, and said "detailed dialogue" between the two governments would begin in the coming months.To exploit them, Israel will likely require the cooperation of Turkey.Steinitz said Israel had so far discovered around 900 billion cubic metres of natural gas but that next month, Israeli waters would be opened up for exploration and that scientists estimated another 2,200 bcm could be found. Steinitz also said Israel was open to greater involvement by Turkey, once its only Muslim ally, in supplying power and aid to the Hamas-run Gaza Strip.
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