Israeli senior offcial slams Turkey expelling Israel's ambassador

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International criticism of the move was mounting on Tuesday and the United Nations Security Council is expected to convene for an emergency meeting later today to discuss the killing, following the request of Kuwait.

"Israel will continue to defend its border from Hamas and Jihad terrorists that try to hurt our citizens," he wrote.

The relations were cut in 2010, after Israeli commandos stormed the Mavi Marmara, a Gaza-bound solidarity ship, and killed nine passengers.

In 2016, the ties were normalized with a rapprochement agreement after Netanyahu apologized for the incident.

JERUSALEM, May 15 (Xinhua) -- An Israeli senior official slammed Tuesday Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as a "hypocrite" following Ankara's decision to expel Israel's ambassador to Turkey in light of the bloodshed in Gaza.

The Turkish government expelled Israeli ambassador to protest the killing of dozens of Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip on Monday, according to a statement released by Turkey's foreign ministry.

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu retaliated by saying Erdogan "is among Hamas' biggest supporters and there is no doubt that he well understands terrorism and slaughter."

Turkey called back its own ambassador to Israel on Monday, as did South Africa.

"Erdogan is the greatest inciter," Israeli Intelligence and Transportation Minister Israel Katz wrote on his Tweeter account. "Hypocrisy knows no limits."

The move came in response to deadly clashes along the fence between the besieged Palestinian enclave and Israel on Monday. At least 60 people, including minors, were killed and more than 2,700 were injured, according to the Palestinian health ministry.

Earlier, Erdogan condemned the killing as "a genocide."

"I suggest that he not preach morality to us," Netanyahu said in a statement released on his behalf.

The ties between Israel and Turkey were greatly strained over the past years, particularly over the Israeli occupation of West Bank and the Gaza Strip.