Wednesday, November 21, 2018
   
Text Size

Site Search powered by Ajax

Israel seizes aid boat headed for Gaza Strip, arrests 12 on board

Israeli Navy intercepts second aid ship in a week from flotilla aiming to break the devastating Gaza Strip blockade.

Israeli naval forces seized a Swedish-flagged ship carrying much-needed aid that was headed for the besieged Gaza Strip.

The Freedom for Gaza vessel, which had 12 people and medical equipment onboard, was intercepted late on Friday and taken to the Israeli port of Ashdod, the Israeli military said in a statement.

The ship was part of a four-vessel Freedom Flotilla Coalition that left from Denmark in May with the aim of breaking the crushing 12-year Gaza blockade imposed by Israel and neighbouring Egypt.

Its last reported position before losing contact with the flotilla was 40 nautical miles from Gaza's coastline, the group said in a statement on Saturday.

"We demand that the Israeli occupation forces not interfere with our unarmed yacht as we continue our voyage to Gaza to deliver our gift of much-needed medical supplies," Dror Feiler, a spokesman for the coalition, said.

Two million people living in Gaza lack access electricity, food, healthcare and other basic services, according to the UN, with conditions in the enclave set to become "unliveable" by 2020.

Repeated interceptions

The Israeli army said in a statement the vessel was monitored and intercepted in accordance with international law. Those on board were held for "further inquiry".

It was the second flotilla vessel held by Israeli authorities in a week, after naval forces seized a Norwegian-flagged boat carrying at least 23 people on Sunday.

The interceptions follow a number of failed attempts by activists to reach Gaza's coastline in recent years.


READ MORE: Israel intercepts aid boat bound for besieged Gaza Strip


In 2015, a flotilla of four boats bound for Gaza was forcibly redirected to Ashdod.

In 2010, an attempt to reach the enclave by the Turkish Mavi Marmara flotilla proved fatal when Israeli commandos stormed the ship, killing nine Turkish nationals.

In May,  a flotilla carrying at least 25 patients, students and activists broke Israel's imposed boundary off the coast of the Gaza Strip for the first time in more than a decade.

Israel prohibits ships from travelling more than six nautical miles from Gaza's coastline.

The vessel, however, travelled nine nautical miles offshore before four Israeli warships flanked it and diverted it to Ashdod.


blog comments powered by Disqus

Subscribe via RSS or Email:

Israeli air raids kill five Palesti...

Read More

Fierce fighting 'eases' in Hodeidah...

Read More

Saudis discussed killing enemies a ...

Read More

Khashoggi killing: Demand for justi...

Read More

Israel kills seven Palestinians in ...

Read More

UK calls for end to Yemen war, Khas...

Read More

Donation

Thanks to all of our supporters for your generosity and your encouragement of an independent press!

Enter Amount:

Featured_Author

Login






Login reminder Forgot login?

Subscribe to MWC News Alert

Email Address

Subscribe in a reader Facebok page Twitter page

Israel pounds Gaza

India's Kerala state devastated

Capturing life under apartheid