Turkish charity head: there are still missing Gaza activists

The Humanitarian Relief Foundation said that there were still missing people from the convoy that was detained by Israel when carrying aid to Gaza.

Turkish charity head: there are still missing Gaza activists

The Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH) said on Thursday that there were still missing people from the convoy that was detained by Israel when carrying aid to Gaza.

IHH's chairman Bulent Yildirim said Israel handed over bodies of nine dead people so far.

"However, we have a longer list, there are still people who are missing," Yildirim told reporters at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport.

Yildirim was one of the passengers on the "Mavi Marmara" ship that was attacked by Israel when carrying humanitarian aid to Gaza.

Israeli navy forces raided on Monday a convoy of aid ships of Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH) carrying humanitarian aid for Gaza, killing at least nine people and injuring 30 others.

"Our doctors handed over 38 people who were injured to Israel, however they told us that there were only 21 injured when we were returning," Yildirim said.

"Israeli soldiers started to attack our ship from planes and boats early on Monday, at first we thought it was a show however soldiers started to get on our ship," he said.

Yildirim said passengers on the ship showed civil resistance, the press was there, and the IHH called on the passengers not to allow Israeli soldiers in.

"We defended ourselves with iron rods against the best teams and commandos of Israel," Yildirim said.

Yildirim said many people were wounded by the gas bombs, and a journalist named Cevdet was taking photographs when he was shot by a bullet.

"We rendered ten of soldiers who got on the ship ineffective, we took their weapons, but it would have been self-defense even if we had used those weapons, however we threw the weapons into the sea," he said.

"The soldiers shot a doctor who surrendered and they threw dead bodies into the sea. We still don't know what happened to them," said Yildirim.

Yildirim said one of their friends was shot after he surrendered, and there was nothing like humanity during that time.

After they detained, Israeli soldiers insulted them, Yildirim said.

Yildirim said Israeli officials started to conciliate with us after torturing us because Turkey and the world rebelled.

"We will continue until embargo is lifted, and we will make the entire world take action from the sea and land with bigger convoys to end the embargo," he said.

Yildirim said, "this is not serious but Palestinian women and children are experiencing ten-times more than this every day."

The IHH launched the aid campaign against violence, and there were people from every religion among their group, he said.

Yildirim also said the entire world condemned Israel, Greek volunteers had been hit when Israeli soldiers got on the ship but they did not take a backward step.

Three Turkish Airlines (THY) planes, carrying activists who were detained in a recent Israeli raid against Gaza-bound aid ships, landed in Istanbul early on Thursday.

The planes, carrying 466 activists as well as bodies of 9 people that were killed in the attack, landed at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport at short intervals.

Turkish State Minister & Deputy Premier Bulent Arinc and a number of officials welcomed the THY planes which also brought back four Justice and Development (AK) Party deputies who went to Israel to help the volunteers.


Agencies

Last Mod: 03 Haziran 2010, 12:09
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