Pro-Palestinian Turks stage a protest rally at Fatih Mosque hours after Israel launched a ground operation in Gaza Strip, in Istanbul, Turkey, Friday, July 18, 2014. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
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Israel said Friday it was reducing its diplomatic presence in Turkey after protesters angered by its ground offensive into Gaza pelted its consulate in Istanbul with stones and draped Palestinian flags on the ambassador's residence in Ankara.Erdogan accused the Jewish state Wednesday of terrorizing the region and likened an Israeli MP and member of the governing coalition to Hitler.Turkish riot police fired tear gas and water cannon early Friday to disperse protesters outside the Israeli mission in Istanbul, but did not intervene in Ankara, where windows of the ambassador's residence were smashed, local media reported.NATO member Turkey was once Israel's closest ally in the region.While trade between the countries remains largely unaffected, Israel's diplomatic presence in Turkey had already been reduced.
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