NZ union leader detained by Israeli military

The Freedom Flotilla Coalition, an umbrella group comprising pro-Palestinian and Islamic charities from around the world, said on Twitter that Israel had "hijacked" the vessel.

Israel, citing security concerns that include fears of Hamas weapons smuggling, maintains a naval blockade of Gaza, and along with Egypt also restricts imports by land.

In 2010, six ships, carrying humanitarian aid and construction materials to Gaza, were blocked by Israel's navy commando unit in worldwide waters off Gaza.

Consortium News reported on July 9 that Joe Meadors, a survivor of the 1967 Israeli attack on the USS Liberty, joined the 2018 Gaza Freedom Flotilla as the delegate from the United States.

An activist group affiliated with the boat, the al-Awda (the Return), said 22 people and a cargo of medical supplies were on board.

Gaza, a coastal sliver on the Mediterranean, is where Palestinian resistance movements enjoy massive public support.

Speaking to journalists at the parliament, Peoples' Democratic Party's lawmaker Tulay Hatimogullari reminded that Israeli forces had martyred at least 150 Palestinians and wounded 15,000 others during protests in Gaza since the beginning of this year.

An Israeli border guard during clashes with Palestinian protesters in the village of Kobar in the occupied West Bank
Two Palestinians, including teen, dead in Gaza protests

A military statement said "the activity ended without exceptional events".

Humanitarian Care Malaysia (MyCare) chief executive officer Kamarul Zaman Shaharul Anwar, in a statement on Sunday night, said the vessel Al-Awda had lost communication with the Freedom Flotilla coalition's media contacts. He boarded the Al Awda in Palermo, Sicily for the final 1,000 miles to Gaza and is now in Israeli custody.

The IDF intercepted a Norwegian-flagged ship attempting to breach the Gaza Strip's maritime blockade and transferred the vessel to the port of Ashdod, the army confirmed on Sunday. The Palestinians claim that tens of thousands of original refugees, displaced at the time of Israel's creation in 1948, and their millions of descendants, have a "right of return".

Although they expected the interception to happen, those on board noted they sailed "as a symbolic means of drawing worldwide attention to the plight of 1.8 million people living in Gaza under that siege", Stratford said.

Most of the Palestinians killed were members of the Hamas terror group, according to the group itself.

He pointed out that both sides do not have political goals for a new war, stressing that Israel is more occupied with the growing threats on the northern front with Syria where it is attempting to impose a different reality on the Golan front.

Twitter reacts to Carmelo Anthony's reported $27.9 million buyout
Anthony will immediately be waived, with the Houston Rockets looking like the frontrunner to sign him as a free agent. Twitter reacted to the news by applauding the 10-time All-Star's ability to continue to make his money.


  • Sonia Alvarado