Sunday, August 24, 2008

Stick this up yer blockade

The 44 activists had set sail from Cyprus on Friday aiming to defy an Israeli blockade of the territory which was tightened when the Islamist Hamas movement seized power in June 2007. Since then Israel has sealed Gaza off from all but vital humanitarian aid as it aims to put pressure on Palestinian militants who, before a truce took effect June 19, were launching daily rocket attacks on southern Israel. The activists had expected to be stopped by the Israelis, who had warned them to stay out of Gaza's coastal waters, but on Saturday Israel decided to allow them through without incident in order to avoid a public standoff.

There was a certain naivity in the earlier protestations from some of those on board about being targetted by the Israeli navy, but perhaps that was delibrate. The news coverage was certainly ample. Prior to this most people wouldn't have been aware of any kind of blockade.

Further reports:


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