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Israel likely to reject international inquiry

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Israel likely to reject international inquiry


Israel looks set to reject a proposal for an international inquiry into last week’s deadly raid by Israeli commandos on a Gaza-bound aid ship.

The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has suggested a panel including representatives from Turkey – nine of whose nationals were shot dead – as well as Israel and the United States.

But Israel’s US ambassador and at least one government minister have said no.

I think that Israel can investigate all events by itself,” said the Science Minister Daniel Hershkowitz. “We always check ourselves that we want to know whether… something went wrong and if so, how to fix it. I think that Israel can do it, we do not need any international help in doing it.”

Seven pro-Palestinian activists have arrived in Jordan after being deported by Israel. The six Malaysians and one Cuban were detained yesterday while trying to sail another aid ship to Gaza.

Israeli forces intercepted the Rachel Corrie in international waters and boarded the ship without resistance.

“Obviously the world knows now that we cannot send the aid to Gaza,” said Malaysian activist Ahmed Faiz Al Azumo. “We failed in that mission. But as for now we want the whole world, citizens of the world, community of the world to stand up, speak up. Stop the embargo, stop the siege.”

Among the other four activists being deported is former Nobel Prize winner Mairead Maguire.

The Free Gaza movement which organised the attempts to break the Israeli blockade has vowed to send further aid shipments.

In what is likely to be seen in Israel as a provocative move, reports from Iran say its forces are ready to escort them.

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