Turkey’s head of religious affairs Mehmet Gormez promised to rebuild mosques and hospitals in Gaza which were destroyed by Israel during a military offensive last summer.
During a visit to Gaza Strip on Sunday, Gormez said, “We promise to rebuild these mosques under the guidance of Turkey’s presidency of religious affairs.”
Israel destroyed 161 mosques in Gaza Strip, Palestinian Awqaf Minister Yousef Dois said on August 2014.
An attack named “Operation Protective Edge” was launched by Israel in Gaza Strip on July 8, 2014, that left more than 2,000 people, most of them civilians, dead.
Many parts of Gaza have yet to be reconstructed due to the fact that they have no access to any material because of Israeli economic blockade.
Gormez arrived in Palestine on May 14 to attend a ceremony in al Aqsa Mosque to mark the Isra and Miraj Day, a day celebrated in the Muslim faith.
Gormez said that Israel must be prosecuted for the crimes that it committed against Palestinians, and that the people of Gaza have “free minds and free hearth” despite the daily horrors they faced.
“Israel used internationally banned weapons and violated religious and human rights of Palestinians,” said Gormez.
Gaza has been under blockade of Israel since 2007, and more than 20,000 homes were destroyed as hundreds of thousands are still displaced, according to the UN Relief and Works Agency.
Attending the 6th International Jerusalem Conference in Bethelem on Tuesday, Gormez also said “It’s our duty to build a university in Beytu’l Maqdis under the name of ‘Masjid al Aqsa University’ and to take notice of every subject concerning to Muslims.”
Gormez also met with Ismail Haniyeh, deputy chairman of the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) party political bureau, in Gaza on Sunday.
Hamas is a Palestinian party governing Gaza, which was established in 1987 and won the elections of the Palestinian parliamentary in 2006.
Haniyeh praised Turkey’s assistance to Palestinians, as an indication of the “reliable and sacred” bond between the two sides.
“Gaza in particular and Palestine in general praises Turkey’s support in all domains,” Haniyeh said.