'Hamas leader is brain behind Dutch flotilla'

June 30, 2011 18:08

'De Telegraaf' report says Amin Abu Rashid spotted training with Gaza-bound crew in Greece; Edelstein: Participation shows intent to provoke.

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The 'Mavi Marmara'

The 'Mavi Marmara' 311 (R). (photo credit: Reuters/Emrah Dalkaya)

Hamas leader from Holland Amin Abu Rashid has been seen in recent days training with a Gaza-bound flotilla crew in Greece, according to a report by Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf on Thursday.

Rashid, described as the "brain" behind the flotilla, helped arrange the purchasing of the Dutch boat expected to be used in the expedition, De Telegraaf reported.

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Rashid also allegedly organized the majority of the funding for the flotilla, the report said.

The participation of a Hamas member in the Gaza-bound flotilla proves that the flotilla does not have humanitarian intent, but is actually a provocation and a terror operation, Public Affairs and Diplomacy Minister Yuli Edelstein said in response to the report.

"The participation of Hamas member Amin Abu Rashid in the flotilla, who is known for fundraising money for Hamas terror operations, is clear proof that this is not a humanitarian flotilla, but a provocation and a terror operation in disguise of a flotilla," Edelstein said.

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"In the previous flotilla, Abu Rashid expressed his intentions to clash with IDF soldiers and we must take into account that this will be his intention in the current flotilla. Israel is prepared for every scenario and the world's countries must now reinforce the country seven-fold," the minister added.

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