The Israeli navy boarded the Gaza-bound "Estelle" ship, which was
seeking to breach Israel's naval blockade on Gaza, the IDF confirmed at 11:40 am on Saturday.
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army said the soldiers seized control of the ship, which is carrying
"When the passengers made it
clear that they would not cooperate or accept the invitation to sail to
the Ashdod Port, it was decided to seize the vessel and bring it to the
Ashdod Port," the army said in a statement.
"The Navy force
operated as planned to guarantee the safety of the soldiers and
passengers on the deck. The soldiers did not use force while seizing the
The army added that once the ship reaches Ashdod the passengers will be handed over to police and immigration authorities.
The IDF spokesperson added that any organization or
country wishing to reach Gaza or move humanitarian aid is able to do so legally
and orderly at all times through land passages and in coordination
with the Israeli authorities.