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Israelis halt ship carrying aid toward Gaza

  • Story Highlights
  • Ships stopped vessel carrying 50 tons of aid for Gaza, activist says
  • The cargo included medical equipment, food and toys
  • Israelis warned that any continuation by the ship would break international law
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From Nada Husseini
CNN
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BEIRUT, Lebanon (CNN) -- Israeli warships halted a ship laden with 50 tons of aid for Gaza about 20 miles off the territory's coast Wednesday, an activist said.

The Lebanese Fraternity was halted at 8:30 p.m. (1:30 p.m. ET), said the Lebanese aid coordinator, Maan Bashur.

The cargo included medical equipment, food and toys, he said.

The ship's nine passengers included six Lebanese activists and a Lebanese religious man, a British activist and a Palestinian religious man, he said.

The Israelis warned that any continuation by the Togo-flagged ship of its journey would break international law, Bashur said. Accompanying the Israeli ships were two Israeli helicopters.

In a separate incident, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency condemned the confiscation Tuesday by Palestinian police of more than 3,500 blankets and 400 food parcels from a distribution center in Gaza and demanded its return.

"This took place after UNRWA staff had earlier refused to hand over the aid supplies to the Hamas-run Ministry of Social Affairs," the agency said in a written statement. "The police subsequently broke into the warehouse and seized the aid by force."

The aid was to have been distributed to 500 area families, it said.

All About GazaIsraelUnited Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East

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