Israel warship approaches Gaza-bound activist boat

Ship is 25 miles from Gaza coast; Navy expected to intercept the boat carrying Jewish activists and divert it to Ashdod port.

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
September 28, 2010 10:10
Palestinians ride boats in Gaza waters and an Isra

Gaza Boat 311. (photo credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS)

 
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The captain of a catamaran carrying Jewish activists toward the Gaza Strip says an Israeli warship is approaching the vessel.

Capt. Glynn Secker says his boat is about 25 miles (40 kilometers) from Gaza and that expects the navy to intercept the Irene within the next hours.

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The Israeli military said Tuesday it would not intervene until the boat tries to breach the blockade.

The Irene, which is carrying nine Jewish activists from Israel and other countries, set sail from Cyprus on Sunday. The activists said they are trying to draw attention to Israel's blockade of Gaza and will not resist if they are stopped.

Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Andy David called the activists' claim to be bringing aid to Gaza "ridiculous" and labeled the voyage "a politically motivated provocation."

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