Palestinian National Authority (PNA) Sunday called for
international protection to a boat carrying pro-Palestinian
activists trying to break Israel's naval blockade on the Gaza
Strip, reported Xinhua.
The Islamic Hamas movement, which controls Gaza, has also urged
the world to respond to Israeli threats against Estelle, the
The international community must provide protection for the
flotilla because it is a legitimate peaceful activity directed
against the Israeli siege, said Nour Odeh, spokeswoman for the PNA.
The boat set sail from Naples, Italy, on Oct 7. It carries more
than a dozen activists, most of them from Western countries, and
It is scheduled to arrive in Gaza in two weeks, depending on
But the Israel foreign ministry Saturday notified Finland that the
boat will be stopped if it tried to enter Gaza's waters.
Yousef Rizka, a Hamas official, warned that Israel may use
"violence and terror to prevent the humanitarian aid from reaching
Gaza". He said the international community must "stop the Israeli
In 2008, several international ferries succeeded in docking at
Gaza's fishing harbour, a year after Israel imposed a strict
ground and naval blockade on Gaza to isolate Hamas.
However, following the three-week Operation Cast Lead between 2008
and 2009, Israel decided to ban all foreign ships from entering
In 2010, Israeli commandos intercepted a Turkish flotilla bound
for Gaza and killed nine Pro-Palestinian Turks, tensing diplomatic
relations between Israel and Turkey. Following the standoff,
Israel relaxed the overland closure, but kept the naval blockade