TEL AVIV, February 5 (RIA Novosti) - Israel's navy
has seized a Lebanese ship carrying humanitarian aid to the
Gaza Strip, a spokesman for the Israel Defense Forces said on
The Israeli navy had initially "prevented the ship from
entering Gaza waters" and ordered the vessel to head for Egypt,
but the crew failed to obey, the Haaretz newspaper quoted
Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak as saying.
The Togo-flagged "Brotherhood Ship," carrying 50 metric
tons of humanitarian aid for Gaza, was towed to the Israeli
port of Ashdod. Nine people were on board the ship, including
Lebanese, Palestinian and British nationals.
The Israel Defense Forces spokesman rejected media reports
that the ship had been fired upon, saying that the Israeli
soldiers had boarded the vessel without using their weapons.
The ship was sent by the Palestinian National Committee
Against the Siege in cooperation with the U.S.-based Free Gaza