Israel is continuing to threaten a group of international activists who are planning to sail to Gaza this week with humanitarian aid. Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said participants in the 10-boat flotilla were seeking “confrontation and blood.” Last year, Israeli forces killed nine activists aboard the Gaza-bound Mavi Marmara. Ehud Barak is Israel’s Defense Minister.
Ehud Barak, Israeli Defense Minister: “The instruction that I gave to the Israeli Defense Forces, backed by the cabinet, is to stop the maritime vessels in case they try to reach (Gaza). We will warn them, explain and try to avoid confrontation. But at the end of the day the flotilla cannot get to Gaza, and therefore we call upon all involved to cancel it and determine that in such a case of any kind of confrontation or damage, the responsibility lies with the participants and organizers of the flotilla.”
Meanwhile, activists say one of the 10 boats scheduled to sail to Gaza has been sabotaged in a Greek port. Saboteurs reportedly cut off the propeller shaft of a ship shared by Swedish, Norwegian and Greek activists. Organizers say the boat will be repaired in time to sail to Gaza.