Obama administration belatedly rips into ally Turkey over Israel criticism

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The comments come after an Associated Press reporter pressed Nuland on Monday to explain why the Obama administration had declined to denounce Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's comments to the conference of the Eurasian Islamic Council in Istanbul. Nuland at the time declined to condemn Erdogan's comments, saying, “I’m not going to get into a public spitting match with allies on either side.” 

The heated exchange was widely covered by U.S. conservative media.

Ties between Israel and NATO member Turkey have unraveled since Israeli commandos killed eight Turkish activists trying to break the Gaza blockade two years ago.