An Irish motor launch due to take part in the Gaza peace flotilla has, according to its Irish sponsors, been sabotaged while in dock in Turkey.
They have accused Israel of being behind the act which could, in the skipper’s opinion, have led to the ship sinking and endangering the crew and passengers.
Last year nine Turkish activists were killed when Israeli special forces stormed a boat whose crew say they were taking humanitarian aid to Gaza.
Israel has imposed a naval blockade of Gaza, claiming it is trying to stop weapons being smuggled to Palestinian militants who fire rockets from Gaza into Israel.
The Israeli government has said that despite last year’s fatal intervention, which was widely condemned by much of the international community, it will again try to stop any boat reaching Gaza. It has proposed to the activists that they deliver the aid to the Israeli port of Ashdod.