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Turkey’s IHH won’t send ship on flotilla to Gaza

Gaza Flotilla to sail without Mavi Marmara
Gaza Flotilla to sail without Mavi Marmara this year

The Turkish ship Mavi Marmara, raided by Israel navy while attempting to breach an Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip last year, will not take part in this year’s trip.

Bulent Yildirim, president of the Turkish Humanitarian Aid Foundation (IHH), informed the vessel ” Mavi Marmara ” will not be able to make the trip to Gaza for technical reasons. The ship is too much dameged, which was raided by Israeli forces containin commandos during last year’s flotilla on May 31, 2010, and repairs are now unlikely to be completed by the time the international flotilla will set course to Gaza, later this month.

Israeli Raid on vessel put Turkey Israel Relations into crisis

Eight Turks and one Turkish-American humanitarian were killed during the 2010 raid on the Mavi Marmara, bringing once-solid Turkish-Israeli relations to a crisis and standstill.

Despite the Mavi Marmara’s absence, the HH will still be a part of the international group that organized the Gaza mission, Yildirim also said. However, an İHH spokesman had signaled this week that the group might cancel plans to travel to Gaza given new developments in the region, particularly the crisis in neighboring Syria.

Turkish Government has nothing to do with the Gaza Flotilla decision

Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, who earlier said the government would not interfere with a civilian initiative, said this month that the organizers should wait to see how an Egyptian decision to lift the blockade of Gaza and a Palestinian reconciliation deal will affect the situation in Gaza. Yildirim stated the IHH decision not to send the Mavi Marmara to Gaza had nothing to do with the government, emphasizing that it is a purely technical decision. “There is absolutely no obstruction by the government,” he commented.

However a member of the group Free Gaza said the flotilla would still set sail without the IHH boat but with around ten others from a range of pro-Palestinian groups.


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