The “Audacity of Hope,” a Palestinian aid ship part of the commemorative flotilla, has been towed back to Greece. Despite the monetary and economic troubles that Greece is currently experiencing, the Mediterranean nation has enough funds to stop a peaceful group of several hundred activists to deliver much needed aid to the besieged Gaza Strip. The Greeks were more professional than their Israeli counterparts, who, in a raid last year on the Mavi Marmara, killed 9, including an American citizen.
Greek commandos “surrounded” the Audacity of Hope with live weapons, boarded the boat, and eventually towed it back to a different port for fear of sabotage by Israelis:
The boat has not been free of sabotage attempts. On June 24, an annonymous complaint was filed against the ship’s “seaworthiness”. The Israel Law Centre (Shurat HaDin), took responsibility for the complaint in the Israeli press.
The Greek embassy in Tel Aviv put out a statement confirming that the Greek coast guard has enforced a decision by the Civil Defence to prevent all flotilla vessels from leaving Greek ports.
Greece’s Civil Protection Ministry said coast guard authorities had been ordered to take “all appropriate measures” to implement the ban.
It also said the “broader maritime area of the eastern Mediterranean will be continuously monitored by electronic means for tracking, where applicable, the movements of the ships allegedly participating” in the flotilla.
At this point, it is nonsensical for Israel to act like they are not acting to derail most, if not all, of these humanitarian flotillas. Some are even suggesting that Israel is using the fragile state of Greek finances to enforce the ban on the flotilla. To be fair, however, this cannot be corroborated until both Greece and Israel’s finances are made public record.