The Gaddafi International Foundation, the sponsor of the Libyan Aid Ship heading to Gaza, stated that the ship changed its route to Egypt instead of Gaza after receiving guarantees that all of its cargo would be sent to Gaza after it docks in al-Arish Port in Egypt.
The cargo and aid supplies are expected to be unloaded Thursday as the Qaddafi foundation said that the ship received all needed guarantees that all aid supplies, including cement and iron, would be sent to Gaza.
It said that the decision was made in order to ensure the safety of the activists as Israel threatened to use force in commandeering the ship.
Yousef Silwan, the executive director of the Qaddafi Foundation, held a press conference in Tripoli on Wednesday and stated that an amount of 50 M. USD, would also be allowed into Gaza.
The money is the amount the Arab League vowed during last year’s Arab Summit to transfer to Gaza in order to build housing projects for the resident as their homes were bombarded by the Israeli army during the war.
The Qaddafi foundation slammed some voices that called for engaging in armed conflict with the Israeli Navy, and said that such an act would not serve the Palestinian people and their cause, adding such a ‘request’ should be addressed to Arab armies and not to a “simple cargo ship”.
An official at al-Arish Port reported that the ship entered the port on Wednesday and will unload its cargo Thursday.
The official confirmed that the aid supplies and the activists will be allowed into the Gaza Strip; the passengers and medical supplies would be allowed into Gaza through the Rafah Terminal, while food supplies will be sent to Gaza via the al-Oja terminal.
Accompanying the ship, Al-Jazeera reporter, Ayyash Darraji, stated that the Israeli Navy surrounded it on Wednesday at night and that Navy ships created a path to force it into one direction shifting its away from the Gaza shore.
Darraji added Israeli navy boats continued their siege on the ship for 24 hours, and threatened to attack it should it fail to change its route.
Libyan Aid Ship Docks At Al Arish Port
Thu, 15 Jul 2010 02:18:19
The Libyan Aid Ship heading to Gaza to deliver humanitarian supplies docked on Thursday at the Egyptian al-Arish Port after a four-day trip starting from Greece. The “Hope” ship decided to dock in Egypt after Israel threatened to attack it.
The Israeli Navy initiated contact with the ship two days ago and warned the captain that the ship will not be allowed to reach the Gaza shore. The navy said that it will resort to violence should the ship fail change its route.
The Qaddafi Foundation in Libya, the organizer of the ship, said that it received guarantees from Egypt and from a European mediators that Israel will allow the aid supplies to be sent to Gaza.
Egyptian officials at al-Arish Port said that the cargo would be unloaded before they are transferred to Gaza via the Kerem Shalom (Karem Abu Salem) crossing leading to Gaza.
The passengers and medical supplies would also be allowed into Gaza via the Rafah Border Terminal between Gaza and Egypt.