Israel anticipates aid convoys to Gaza may attempt to bust naval blockade

[ 26/12/2010 – 11:40 AM ]


OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)– Israel has been on alert since early Saturday as it anticipates that a convoy of ships which departed from Syria Sunday could change course from its destination in the port of El Arish in Egypt and head straight for the Gaza Strip in an attempt to break Israel’s naval blockade.

Reports received by Tel Aviv imply that Turkish activists who were aboard the Mavi Marmara ship and arrested in wake of the clashes with Israeli forces have joined the naval vessel that will leave Lattakia today, said Israeli daily Yediot Ahranot.

Israeli authorities have been closely monitoring preparations for the ships which are set to sail from the Syrian port of Lattakia to the Gaza Strip or to El Arish, Israeli politicians said.

Activists from India, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Iran are expected to take part on the convoy, the sources added, alleging  that the activists are believed to have been equipped with means of combat and inflammatory material in Tehran, where official welcoming ceremonies were held for them.

Tel Aviv is seriously considering Iran’s involvement in coordinating the convoy, and will not allow any provocative activity, the sources went on to say.

Egypt’s El Arish port is the official destination for ships delivering aid to the Gaza Strip.

The Turkish humanitarian fund IHH, the group that stood behind the Gaza-bound ships that were attacked by Israeli forces last May, is scheduled to sponsor Sunday a welcoming party for the Mavi Marmara, which will return to Istanbul carrying relatives of the nine Turks who were killed on board in the attacks.

Israel anticipates aid convoys to Gaza may attempt to bust naval blockade.

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