“Free Gaza” nears Gaza. What dastardly thing will Israel do to stop them?

The passenger vessel, the SS Free Gaza has apparently departed and is due to arrive in Gaza on Wednesday.

A Palestinian official announced on Sunday that the “Free Gaza” vessel has already sailed and will arrive at Gaza shores on Wednesday or Thursday.

    Jamal al-Khodary, chief of the Popular Committee Against the Siege told a rally held at Gaza City’s fishing harbor that “Free Gaza” ship will arrive at Gaza most probably on Wednesday or Thursday.

    The “Free Gaza” vessel, which departed from Cyprus on August 5,is accompanied by another vessel carrying mass media men as well as peace activists, physicians and parliamentarians.

    “The ship won’t return if the Israeli naval forces block it. It will continue sailing to Gaza, and if it is prevented by Israel, it will remain in the center of the sea,” said al-Khodary.

    He added that “it is its right, we welcome it and the (Israel) occupation has no right to prevent it.”

    The initiative was taken by Free Gaza Movement which comprises human rights activists, lawyers, journalists and peace activists. It aims to challenge the siege which Israel imposed on Gaza last year to isolate Hamas movement.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2008-08/11/content_9155601.htm

The peace activists face the Israeli Navy as they come into Gaza.  They will not be invading Israeli waters, but will be testing whether Israel is sincere or not when they say they no longer occupy Gaza.  Israel has vowed it will not let the boat pass as it may possibly be carrying arms for Hamas!  Yvonne Ridley writes:

Meanwhile, I am told to watch out for new tactics from the Zionist military as they attempt to stop our boats from sailing into Gaza in a few days time.Reports have just reached me that a couple of days ago as Palestinians, internationals and Israeli activists demonstrated against the Israeli Apartheid wall in Bi’lin. Soldiers began to spray an unknown substance over the demonstrators from a truck.

The liquid was discolored and foul smelling and a number of demonstrators vomited and many had to leave the area, as the stench was so unbearable. As demonstrators withdrew, soldiers also fired tear gas canisters at them.

This, apparently is a new low in the tactics deployed by the fourth largest army in the world … a cowardly army which uses live rounds to kill and maim women and children.

Activists are awaiting results from analysis of the liquid samples that were collected during the demonstration and naturally, I have a personal interest in knowing their contents.

But all of this behavior from these silly men in uniforms only makes me more determined than ever to step on to the beach of Gaza. And once I get there the first person I am going to ask about is our little brother who is hooked up to a dialysis machine. Hang in there, Mohamed.

 

http://www.presstv.ir/detail.aspx?id=66167&sectionid=3510304

Or is it possible that they will meet with even rougher tactics as the award winning journalist Mohammed Omer did as he tried to cross back into Gaza and was beaten by Shin Bet when they couldn’t rob him of his award money?  Is what happened to these palestinian fishermen possible?

Israeli naval gunships opened fire on Sunday at fishing boats near Rafah shores in southern Gaza Strip, but no injuries were reported, Hamas security sources said.

    The sources said Israeli naval gunships opened fire at the fishing boats, violating an Egyptian-brokered six-month truce with Gaza militant groups.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2008-08/10/content_9140255.htm

Update: 8/13/08.  It appears the voyage will be delayed a week due to weather conditions:

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2008-08/13/content_9263897.htm

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