Home > Sweden, Ulf Carmesund > Swede Witnesses Attack on Ships by Israeli Forces

Swede Witnesses Attack on Ships by Israeli Forces

2010-06-03 07:03

At noon on Tuesday Ulf Carmesund landed at Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport after being deported from Israel. He was one of 11 Swedes that took part in an aid mission to the Gaza Strip.

Israeli commando forces raided six ships heading for the Palestinian Gaza Strip on Monday.

[Ulf Carmesund, International Secretary of the Swedish Christian Democrats]:

“It was a surreal experience of a commando pirates and entering our ship with black hood in front of their faces with armed guns, running everywhere as if I was appearing in an American stupid film.”

The fleet was on its way from Cyprus to Gaza when they were attacked on international waters, off the coast of Israel.

[Ulf Carmesund, International Secretary of the Swedish Christian Democrats]: (English, male)

“We had prepared ourselves for this unlikely event we thought. We had prepared non-violently to stand like this, holding each others arms, to try to stop them to enter our wheelhouse on the boat. However we failed because they were very well armed and trained on doing what they did so they pushed us aside. They threw sound grenades which made people feel fear and leave the place. They shot us with paintball guns. So they entered this wheelhouse, knocked our captain with a rifle butt, so he fell to the floor.”

Sources say at least ten people died and dozens were wounded in the violent incident.

The people of the Gaza Strip are in need of aid. And ships bring them over.

[Peter Weiderud, President of the Swedish Christian Democrats]:
”There is two reasons. One is humanitarian. There is a lack of a lot of supplies since the blockade and this was a way for individuals and organizations all over Europe to show solidarity with the people of Gaza bringing this kind of supplies that they don´t have by boat directly. The other of course was a political aim. By doing this, there was way to highlight the necessity to end this.”

The Gaza Strip has been blockaded by Israel since the Hamas took control in June 2007.

[Peter Weiderud, President of the Swedish Christian Democrats]:
“Due to the decision from United Nations, that was a decision by the international community together to create a state of Israel, after the Second World War suffering that the Jewish people had gone through. With that comes the responsibility to follow up and make sure that the decision is implemented, because one result of this implementation was that the Palestinians became homeless and the way Israel carries out their policies particularly after 1967 war with the occupation of the westbank in Gaza. It has really made it necessary for the international community to take the responsibility that they once started with the decision in UN, so our commitment is for the two states to be able to exist, Israel and Palestine together with secure borders.”

The incident has shocked the inter
national community and strained diplomatic relations between Israel and Turkey. Sources say Turkey unofficially supported the Gaza Strip aid mission.

Activists from around the world are protesting while some European countries have condemned Israel.

NTD Stockholm, Sweden

Categories: Sweden, Ulf Carmesund
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