A 2010 Israeli raid on a Turkish boat carrying aid for Gaza in which nine Turkish activists were killed was a "cause for war," Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said, according to a transcript from an interview given to Al Jazeera broadcast last week.
"The May 31, 2010 Mavi Marmara event, the attack that took place in international waters did not comply with any international law. In fact, it was a cause for war. However, befitting Turkey's grandness, we decided to act with patience," Erdogan said.
Excerpts of the interview to Al Jazeera, which was translated into Arabic, were broadcast on Thursday. State-news agency Anatolia published more excerpts late on Sunday in Turkish.
During the interview, Erdogan also said Turkish vessels will be assigned to protect such convoys in the future. Turkey has downgraded ties with former ally Israel over the incident.