Statement from the FFC re. Freedom Flotilla III
The plan for Freedom Flotilla III was to have three boats challenging the blockade and two accompanying/supporting boats. Of the three, the Marianne was on its way from Sweden since May while the Juliano was being prepared in Corfu and the Agios Nikolaos was being prepared in Athens, to start moving in June. All repairs and inspections were made and the two boats were ready to sail.
Israel has not only taken over the sky, borders and Palestinian territorial waters, but has also extended its blockade in the Mediterranean Sea up to 100 nautical miles, violating international and maritime law.
During the operation of hijacking "Marianne" Israeli soldiers used violence, threats and abuse against crew and passengers. The IDF referred to the operation as “uneventful” which can only be understood in the light of the levels of violence used in general in the upholding of the blockade and particularily in the routine hijacking of Palestinian fishing vessels.
It was at the end of March when members of Freedom Flotilla Coalition had the chance to meet Dr. Moncef Marzouki just after the World Social Forum in Tunis. The meeting only lasted for a few minutes, however Dr. Marzouki's response to the question "whether he would like to help FF3 and maybe join our flotilla as a sailor" was immediate and clear: "I will be on board Freedom Flotilla 3".