Israeli naval commandoes took over a German merchant ship which was loaded with weapons and headed to the Gaza Strip from Turkey, Israel said. The operation took place about 200 miles west off the coast of Israel.
The merchant ship, called "Victoria", carried the flag of Liberia. The Israeli army said its soldiers found on board containers with various weapons. The Israeli army said that the takeover of the ship was carried out quickly and without resistance of the crew. The ship was led by the Navy off the coast of Israel for further investigations and a thorough examination of the cargo.
The ship was on its way from the port of Mersin, Turkeyto the port of Alexandria, Egypt. Israel claims the weapons were directed to "terrorist" organizations which operate in the Gaza Strip. Israeli statements stressed that Turkey was not linked to this incident.