(photo credit: Creative Commons)
Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman traveled to Cyprus on Thursday for a two-day
informal meeting of foreign ministers of a number of southern European
countries, at which the issue of the upcoming flotilla to Gaza is expected to be
high on the agenda.
The meeting will include the foreign ministers of
Greece, Italy, Malta and Cyprus, and the deputy foreign minister of
PM tells IDF to plan for flotilla, diplomats to prevent it
Turkish FM warns Israel not to repeat flotilla 'mistake'
Israel’s relations with Greece and Cyprus have improved
dramatically since ties with Turkey have worsened. Cypriot President Dimitri
Christofias, who is the force behind the meeting, visited Israel in March and
will meet Lieberman in Nicosia.
Israel has expressed its appreciation in
the past to Cyprus and Greece for not letting their ports be used by Gaza-bound
“humanitarian aid” ships.
According to diplomatic officials, each
minister will raise issues important to their own country, with immigration
likely to also be high on the agenda because of an influx of refugees resulting
from the upheaval in the Arab world.
A spokesman for the IHH, the
Turkish-based Foundation for Human rights and Freedoms and Humanitarian Relief,
which is organizing the upcoming flotilla, was quoted as saying Wednesday in the
Turkish daily Hurriyet that an international collation of 22 NGOs hopes to send
15 vessels with up to 1,500 people.
Israeli officials, however, said that
these NGOs are having difficulty raising money for the action.
year’s flotilla, which included the Mavi Marmara
, was made up of six ships.
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