Israeli Navy soldiers board Estelle ship bound for Gaza Strip

Photo: IDF (Zahal) Spokesperson

The Navy’s boarding was carried out in accordance with international law, as the ship attempted to break the maritime security blockade of the Gaza Strip

Date: 20/10/2012, 12:11 PM     Author: IDF (Zahal) website A short while ago, Israeli Navy soldiers boarded the Estelle, a vessel which was en route to the Gaza Strip, attempting to break the maritime security blockade. The boarding was carried out in accordance with international law and with directives of the Israeli Government. The boarding took place only after the Navy had made multiple attempts to dissuade the ship’s passengers from sailing to the Gaza Strip – both via direct contact and through diplomatic channels – but to no avail.  

Despite numerous calls to the passengers onboard, they remained unwilling to cooperate with Israeli authorities. After the passengers ignored calls to change course, the decision was made to board the vessel and lead it to the port of Ashdod.   The Israeli Navy soldiers operated as planned and took every precaution necessary to ensure the safety of the passengers. After the boarding of the vessel by IDF (Zahal) soldiers, who did not use force, the passengers were attended to and offered food and beverages.