Netanyahu: Israel will not allow establishment of Iranian port in Gaza

by Barak Ravid|Haaretz.com

Jerusalem, Israel — PM says passengers on Gaza bound ship Rachel Corrie were peace activists, as opposed to violent clashes with ‘Islamic radicals’ on Gaza flotilla earlier this week.

Speaking after he was updated Saturday on the peaceful takeover of the Gaza bound aid ship “Rachel Corrie,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Israel would “not allow the establishment of an Iranian port in Gaza.”

Israel’s Navy troops boarded the Irish-flagged ship and directed it toward the Israeli port city of Ashdod. The move came after warnings that Israel would not allow the vessel to reach Gaza, which is under blockade by Israel, and several days after an Israel Navy takeover of the Turksih-flagged boat Mavi Marmara headed for the Hamas-ruled coastal strip ended in violent clashes and the deaths of nine passengers.

“The only difference was with one ship where extremist Islamic activists, supporters of terrorism, waited for our troops on the deck with axes and knives,” Netanyahu said referring to the clashes on the Mavi Marmara boat.

“Today we saw the difference between a peace flotilla, that we disagree with the activists’ views but respect their right to express themselves, and a hate flotilla which was organized by violent radicals who support terrorism,” Netanyahu said.

For more go to Haaretz.com

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