Navy to hold large-scale exercise ahead of new flotilla

By
June 15, 2011 07:52

Exercise involving special forces will include lessons learned from 'Marmara' raid; Navy preparing for wide range of scenarios aboard ships.

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Mavi Marmara

flotilla 311. (photo credit: Creative Commons)

The Israel Navy will hold a large scale exercise Wednesday as it prepares to stop a flotilla of some 15 ships planning to break the Israel-imposed sea blockade over the Gaza Strip in the coming weeks.

The exercise will involve Navy commandos from Flotilla 13 - better known as the Shayetet - as well as other Navy units and special forces from throughout the defense establishment, who were being included in the operation as part of lessons from the botched Navy raid on the Mavi Marmara Turkish passenger ship last May.

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The Israeli Navy is under orders from the government to enforce the Israeli sea blockade over Gaza which officials have said is crucial for preventing the flow of arms to Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

In recent months, the Navy has reviewed the operation to stop last year's flotilla and has drawn a number of operational conclusions which it hopes will improve the upcoming operation to stop the new flotilla and prevent or at least minimize the loss of human life.

The Navy is preparing for a wide range of scenarios aboard the ship from the possibility that they will encounter passive resistance to the possibility that they will be met once again by mercenaries armed with knives, saws, bats, as well guns.


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