NYT: Palmer report- Gaza blockade legal; raid excessive

September 1, 2011 21:01

The UN Palmer Commission report on the Mavi Marmara incident due to be handed to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon on Friday found that the naval blockade of the Gaza Strip is legal, but IDF commandos exercised excessive force in the raid to prevent the Turkish flotilla from breaking the blockade in May 2010, according to The New York Times who obtained a copy of the report on Thursday. 

The report acknowledges that the IDF commandos were presented with “organized and violent resistance from a group of passengers” upon boarding the vessel and therefore force was necessary for purposes of self defense. However the report contends that the force employed by the soldiers went beyond self-defense and was "excessive and unreasonable,” leading to unnecessary deaths.

The Palmer Commission writes of the Gaza blockade: “Israel faces a real threat to its security from militant groups in Gaza...The naval blockade was imposed as a legitimate security measure in order to prevent weapons from entering Gaza by sea and its implementation complied with the requirements of international law.”

The report was critical of the flotilla, referring to it as "reckless."

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