The appeal was made as the aid vessel, initiated by the organization of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's son, was preparing to set sail from Greece with 27 passengers and 2,000 tons of humanitarian aid.
Israeli Ambassador Gabriela Shalev urged UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to stop the ship from sailing to Gaza. The matter was raised in a meeting with Ban and his senior advisors.
An official letter on the matter was submitted to the UN chief, Security Council president and General Assembly president – Ali Treki of Libya. The Jewish state clarified in the letter that there were alternative ways to transfer humanitarian aid to Gaza, which have been welcomed by the UN institutions and the International Quarter on the Middle East.
"I write to bring to your attention a developing situation of grave concern to my government," Shalev wrote. "It appears that a Moldovan ship, which has been hired and sponsored by a Libyan organization, plans to depart Greece this Saturday with the claimed purpose of bringing aid to Gaza.
"In spite of the stated intention of this mission, we are deeply concerned that the true nature of its actions remains dubious. Israeli has repeatedly guarantees that humanitarian aid will be delivered securely through its established channels."
Loading equipment on ship (Photo: AP)
In the letter, Shalev referred to the intentions of the mission as "questionable and provocative" in light of recent measures taken by Israel to increase the inflow of humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip.
According to the ambassador, the elements funding the Libyan boat are undermining the "real humanitarian efforts." She warned that Israel reserved the right to prevent the boat from violating the naval blockade imposed on the Gaza Strip.
Shalev called on the international community to exert its influence on the Libyan government and prevent the ship from departing to Gaza. "Israel expects the international community to ensure that this ship does not sail," she wrote.
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