French flotilla boat seized, U.S. activists end activities


A French boat that left a Greek port for Gaza earlier in the week was detained by the Greek coast guard, while a U.S. activist group has ended its activities.

The French-flagged Dignity, a pleasure craft with eight passengers on board, was detained Thursday while refueling in Crete. A Greek official told CNN that the ship would not be allowed to continue on to Gaza.

Meanwhile, Leslie Cagan, coordinator of the U.S. Boat to Gaza, wrote Wednesday on the US to Gaza website that the team of activists from the United States ended its activities in Athens.

“The Greek government’s willingness to serve as the enforcer of Israeli’s naval blockade of Gaza made it impossible for this journey to happen,” Cagan wrote.

The U.S.-flagged Audacity of Hope remains in the hand of the Greek authorities and it is not known when it will be released.

Israel intercepts Jewish boat headed for Gaza


Israeli commandos peacefully intercepted a boat carrying Jewish activists who hoped to breach Israel’s embargo of the Gaza Strip.

Israeli Navy boats blocked the Irene, which was carrying 10 passengers and crew, at about midday Tuesday and diverted the boat to Israel’s Ashdod seaport.

The boat is carrying a cargo of toys and medical equipment for distribution inside Gaza. The inventory is intended for delivery to the Gaza Community Mental Health Programme.

Israel has blockaded Gaza because it is under the control of a terrorist group, Hamas.

Israel eased the blockade under international pressure following a deadly May 31 raid on a Turkish-flagged aid ship in a flotilla. Eight Turks and one Turkish-American were killed in the violence.

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