Irish and Canadian ships en route to Gaza
Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit
Ships in Ashdod port
Photo: Avi Roccah

Flotilla organizer: More ships to come

Canadian organizer tells Ynet 'this is just first wave, other countries planning to sail to Gaza'; Six out of 27 passengers released, others to be flown home in upcoming days

A day after the Navy intercepted two vessels from Canada and Ireland a few dozen kilometers from the Gaza shore, the flotilla organizers vow that more ships will attempt to break the blockade on the Strip.


Derrick O'Keefe, one of the organizers of the Canadian flotilla, told Ynet: "This is undoubtedly only the first wave. Other countries are also organizing groups to sail to Gaza, and in Canada we are planning to send more ships."


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 'No humanitarian aid onboard'

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 Another flotilla heads to Gaza


O'keefe noted that anti-Israel rallies were staged in four Canadian cities – Ottawa, Toronto, Ontario and Vancouver. "The Canadian people do not support our government's policy toward Israel. I believe that the blockade on Gaza is unaccepted by most Canadians," he added.


The flotilla organizer accused Israel of staging the takeover in international waters, saying they hold Israel directly responsible for the safety of the passengers.


Navy takeover of Gaza-bound ships


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On Friday, Navy commandos boarded the vessels in a peaceful takeover. IDF officials remarked that they did not find any weapons or humanitarian aid onboard the ship. No injuries were reported during the operation.


After the vessels were towed to the Ashdod Port, the 27 passengers, hailing from Greece, Canada, Israel, Scotland, Egypt, United States, Morocco, Spain and Ireland, were transferred to a Population and Immigration Authority detention center.


On Saturday, 21 of the 27 passengers remained in costudy and are slated to board flights back to their home countries over the next few days.


The other six passengers were released, including 2 Greek crew members, an Egyptian citizen that was returned to Egypt and two reporters, American and Spanish, who were released under limiting conditions and commited to leave Israel on Sunday.


The remaining passanger, Majed Kayal from Haifa, was released on bail after a police investigation.


Omri Efraim contributed to this report




פרסום ראשון: 11.05.11, 09:32
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