Ship radio communication cut

In next few hours, the Irish ship, ‘Saoirse’ (Freedom), along with a Canadian vessel, are expected to enter Gaza Strip waters to try to break the blockade on the territory that has been imposed by Israeli government since 2007. Paul Murphy, Socialist Party Member of European Parliament (MEP), representing Dublin, is on board the Irish boat and has been sending regular live reports on its progress. However, all communication from the ships, including satellite communication with the press, was cut off last night. The last information we received from Paul was at 7.30pm, yesterday evening, when the flotilla was in international waters, around 200 miles from Gaza. According to the last report, Israeli warships were seen in the distance and Israeli spotter planes were also observed flying overhead. Crew and passengers on the ship feared for their safety. An Israeli government official told Reuters, on Wednesday, that Israel, "will take whatever measures will be necessary" to maintain its blockade. Nine people were murdered when Israeli commandos stormed the flotilla in May last year.

The Committee for Workers International demands an immediate end to the siege of Gaza. We demand that Israeli authorities allow all communication with the two boats trying to deliver aid and immediately halt its military action against them. We support the emergency demonstration called in support of flotilla that has been called for 6pm today, in Dublin.

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