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Israel under pressure over aid convoy raid

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Israel under pressure over aid convoy raid

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Israel is facing growing international criticism after its forces stormed a convoy of Gaza-bound aid ships, killing at least ten people.
 
Six ships carrying some 10,000 tonnes of aid had been due to arrive today but Israeli forces boarded the flotilla overnight, clashing with its 500-strong passengers.
 
Israel had repeatedly warned that the convoy would be intercepted if it tried to breach the blockade of the Gaza Strip, which it says is necessary to stop arms supplies from reaching Hamas.
 
Israeli military officials claim the humanitarian activists responded violently by brandishing knives, axes and at least two guns.
 
Some reports have suggested up to 19 people died.
 
The dawn raid has been widely condemned by the international community, including the European Union and the United Nations.
 
The majority of passengers were Turkish nationals and Israel is now advising its citizens against travelling to Turkey.
 
Turkey, meanwhile, has recalled its ambassador to Israel.
 
Ankara has traditionally been Israel’s closest Muslim ally but relations soured after the Turkish government criticised Israel’s military offensive on Gaza in December 2008.