In February 2009, Turkish prosecutors began an investigation into whether Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for crimes against humanity over Israel’s offensive in Gaza after Mazlum-Der, a human rights organization, filed an official complaint in Turkey. The group asked that the Israeli officials concerned be detained if they entered Turkey. The senior Israeli officials concerned were Shimon Peres, Ehud Olmert, Tzipi Livni, Ehud Barak and Gabi Ashkenazi, the army chief of staff. Under Turkish law, prosecutors must look into all complaints to determine whether there are grounds to initiate a full-scale investigation that could lead to formal charges. The complaint would be dismissed should the prosecutor decide it does not merit a case.
Reports surfaced in May 2011 that Turkey’s top prosecutor had sent a letter to Israeli officials requesting the identities of both the soldiers who stormed the Turkish flagged ship and the political and military leaders involved in the operation surrounding the flotilla incident of 31 May 2010. Then, on 28 May 2012, an Istanbul criminal court unanimously approved a 144-page indictment against four Israeli military leaders for their involvement in the killing of nine Turkish pro-Palestinian activists during the May 2010 flotilla incident.