600 activists held in Beersheba jail

Some 45 foreigners from flotilla already slated for deportation.

June 1, 2010 09:04
1 minute read.
An Israeli armed naval boat, right, escorts a ship

Gaza boat escort 311. (photo credit: AP)

Over 600 passengers from the Gaza-bound flotilla which was raided by Israeli forces on Monday were detained on Monday evening and Tuesday morning.

Forty-five detainees were deported on Tuesday from
Ben Gurion International Airport, while an additional three were waiting for flights out of the country.

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Some 130 activists were transferred early Tuesday afternoon to the Ela Prison in Beersheba, where 480 other detainees were being held.

The Israel Prison Service (IPS) said that the prisoners would not be brought before a court due to the special Interior Ministry orders they were  being detained under. They also stated that the prisoners would be permitted to meet with attorneys or consuls from their home countries.

Among the detainees is the leader of the Islamic Movement's northern branch, Sheikh Raed Salah, according to Israel Radio. Salah was said to have been injured in the Monday raid, but the reports turned out to be false.

Arab MK Haneen Zoabi had been detained, but was released after she was questioned by authorities.

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