Report from Freedom Flotilla III, 18 June 2015:
Ship to Gaza’s former fishing ship “Marianne of Gothenbug” has reached the city of Messina, Sicilia. Messina will be the last stop before the ship joins the Freedom Flottila at sea and takes part in the joint effort to sail to Gaza. Among the Freedom flottila crew you find the Swedish journalist Kajsa Ekis-Ekman and the Canadian scholar Robert “Bob” Lovelace, a life-long activist in the movements for the Indigenous peoples’ rights.
On Friday the “Marianne of Gothenburg” crew will take part in non-violence training. At lunch time a press conference will take place, on the initiative of the Messia city mayor. In the late afternoon, the crew will leave Messina in order to join the other ships of the Freedom Flottilla.
Middle East Monitor report, 18 June 2015
The International Committee for Breaking the Siege of Gaza has started the countdown for the launch of the Freedom Flotilla ships heading for Gaza in the third attempt to break the sea blockade imposed on the Gaza Strip.
A few days ago, the Swedish ship arrived in the south-west of Italy. The ‘Marianne’ sailed from Sweden in early May.
In a written statement released yesterday, committee coordinator Zaher Birawi said that there are indicators that the flotilla’s ships will reach their meeting point at sea, and there will be no obstacles to prevent this from happening.
“As to the possibility of arrival at Gaza’s shores, this depends on how the occupation state will deal with the international activists and their peaceful humanitarian mission,” he added.
Birawi stressed that all activists who are taking part in the flotilla are eager to arrive in Gaza to break the siege and deliver a message of love and solidarity to the people of Gaza.
He noted that the coalition of organisations taking part in the flotilla is constantly following up on all arrangements needed for the trip to be a success.