Turkish Prime Minister and Presidential Candidate Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks during AK Party group meeting at the Grand National Assembly of Turkey (TBMM) on July 22, 2014 in Ankara, Turkey. (Halil Sagirkaya - Anadolu Agency)
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Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has sacrificed any possibility of Turkey mediating in Gaza in favor of wooing voters ahead of presidential polls with the toughest-ever anti-Israeli rhetoric from a Turkish leader.Erdogan has long presented himself as a champion of the Palestinian cause and leader of the entire Sunni world.Turkey's usually mildly spoken Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu also launched his own incendiary attack against Israel over the weekend, saying Turkey had no reason to be impartial.Erdogan has himself made clear that the process of normalization of relations between Turkey and Israel – downgraded after the deadly storming by Israeli commandos of a Turkish activist ship off Gaza in 2010 – is now at an end.
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