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Israel-Turkey reconciliation deal 'will bring stability to region'

Israel and Turkey have announced a reconciliation deal to end a bitter six-year rift.

In Rome, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the deal will help bring "stability" to the turbulent Middle East.

His Turkish counterpart, Binali Yildirim, made a simultaneous announcement in Ankara.

Relations between the once-close allies imploded six years ago after an Israeli naval raid killed nine Turks on board an aid ship trying to breach Israel's blockade of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.

Under Monday's deal, the two countries will restore full diplomatic relations. Israel will pay 20 million US dollars (£15 million) in compensation, and it will allow Turkey to carry out a series of aid projects in Gaza.

But while Mr Yildirim said the deal "largely" lifts the Israeli blockade, Mr Netanyahu said the blockade remains in place.

The Turkish premier also said Turkey and Israel will re-appoint ambassadors within weeks.

AP

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