Turkish ship not to join Gaza flotilla
The Turkish ship that became famous after it was raided by Israeli commandoes while en route to Gaza Strip will not join an upcoming aid mission to the Palestinian territory, organisers said Friday. "After the damage caused to the Mavi Marmara, we are not in a position to go to sea," said Bulent Yildirim, the president of the Islamic charity IHH which owns the ship.
Just over a year ago, Israeli troops killed nine Turkish activists when they boarded the Mavi Marmara during an attempt to break the Israeli-imposed blockade of Gaza. Around 10 ships from several countries are expected to join a new flotilla which is scheduled to set sail at the end of June.
Israel has strongly urged Turkey to block the flotilla from leaving this time, warning that its forces will again take action.
Earlier this month, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu urged activists to rethink the upcoming mission after Egypt opened the Rafah crossing into the Gaza Strip.