Turkel Committee calls 'Mavi Marmara' captain to testify

In a letter to the Turkish Embassy in Tel Aviv, commission charged with investigating flotilla raid orders first non-Israeli to testify.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
September 13, 2010 11:37
1 minute read.
The Mavi Marmara ship, aboard which Israel's deadly raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla took place on May

Mavi Marmara 311. (photo credit: Associated Press)

The Turkel Committee sent a letter to the Turkish Embassy on Sunday, inviting the captain of the Mavi Marmara to give his testimony regarding the raid of the ship by IDF commandos on May 31.

The committee, officially known as the Public Commission to Examine the Maritime Incident of 31 May 2010, is charged with investigating the flotilla incident in which nine Turkish pro-Palestinian activists were killed by IDF soldiers while attempting to break the blockade of Gaza.

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It was not clear if the captain of the Mavi Marmara, Tural Mahmut, intended to testify before the committee.

Mahmut is the first non-Israeli to be called before the committee. Until now the committee has taken testimony from senior IDF officials as well as Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

According to an Army Radio report that came out following the raid of the Mavi Marmara, the ship's captain told Israeli investigators that, prior to the raid, he had tried to prevent IHH activists from engaging in violent clashes with IDF soldiers.

The captain told his investigators that he, as well as several of the ship's staff, did everything in their power to prevent violence, including throwing the IHH members' metal pipes and chains overboard.


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