(photo credit: Associated Press)
One of the owners of the Libyan vessel Almathea headed towards Gaza said on Tuesday that if Israel will only allow the ship to dock in Ashdod instead of reaching Gaza, the crew will instead unload the humanitarian goods in the Egyptian port of El-Arish. The activists would then transfer the goods by land to Gaza.
"If this is the only option put forward by the Israeli authorities, we will choose to sail to the port of El-Arish and transfer the assistance by ground to Gaza," Greek businessman Aleksei Angeolopoulos said in an interview with the Arabic newspaper Ashraq al-Awsat.
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Angeolopoulos continued, "I say to the Israeli authorities that the ship is carrying humanitarian aid and food and there are no weapons or prohibited materials, as claimed by Israel."
"If Israel wants, the Israeli navy is invited to board the ship and to search it so that they can see with their own eyes that it is only carrying food and allow it to continue to the port of Gaza."
Activists aboard the Libyan aid ship headed for Gaza plan to arrive at
, AFP news agency reported Monday.
departed on Saturday evening from a port southeast of Athens, carrying
2,000 tons of cargo, including sacks of rice and sugar, and corn oil and
olive paste, mostly donated by Greek companies and charities,
In addition to 15 volunteers – all from Libya,
except for a Nigerian and a Moroccan – the ship has a crew of 12 from
Cuba, Haiti, India and Syria.