Lebanon Flotilla 311.
(photo credit: Associated Press)
Hamas harshly criticized the UN on Saturday for an announcement made Friday which denounced the use of flotillas to break the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip, Al Jazeera reported.
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On Friday, UN spokesman Martin Nesirky responded to reports that a flotilla of two Lebanese ships was set to sail for Gaza, stating that those who wish to deliver humanitarian aid to Gaza should do so by land and not attempt to break Israel's sea blockade of the territory. Hamas called these statements tantamount to "collaboration with the Israeli occupier."
"The UN call to international organizations to use the over-land road to Gaza instead of the sea is unacceptable and illegal," said Hamas Spokesman Sami Abu Zahri.
Abu Zahri called on groups who are interested in delivering aid to Gaza
to continue to do so by sea until the blockade of the territory is
The Navy deployed ships at sea to stop the Lebanese boats which were
scheduled to leave for Gaza from Tripoli sometime over the weekend.
Defense Minister Ehud Barak called the planned Lebanese flotilla "an
unnecessary provocation" on Friday, stating that the ships would be
"stopped at sea" if they failed to heed Navy orders to dock at Ashdod
Port rather than sailing directly for Gaza.