Navy commando boards Gaza-bound weapons ship
Navy commando boards Gaza-bound weapons shipIsrael news photo: IDF

The goal of the planned “provocative and hateful” flotilla to Gaza is aimed at fighting the IDF and not to bring humanitarian aid to Gaza, Navy Commander Vice Admiral Eliezer Meron said Sunday. The Foreign Ministry says that in any event, Gaza is not blockaded.

Turkey has blocked the Mavi Marmara ship, which carried IHH terrorists who clashed with Navy commandos last year, from joining the flotilla, but the remaining nine ships remain a threat, Meron said.

"Allowing ships to sail to Gaza will enable Hamas, a radical terror organization operating under Iran, to arm itself with advanced weaponry and to threaten Israel with rockets and missiles. The goal of the organizers of the flotilla is to clash with soldiers and to create a media provocation and to delegitimize Israel," according to the Navy commander.

The Navy is continuing to prepare for the flotilla, which may carry several legislators and journalists.

The Foreign Ministry has conducted a constant information and diplomatic campaign pointing out that the United Nations has said there is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza and that all merchandise, except weapons and material for weapons, can reach the area via overland routes.

The IDF has enforced a maritime embargo to prevent Hamas and allied terrorists from continuing to smuggle in advanced weapons, explosives and terrorists. Military officials estimate that Hamas already possesses anti-aircraft missiles that can bring down a commercial airline.

The Shurat HaDin (Israel Law Center) has played a major part in crippling efforts to test the IDF in the high seas. Threatened lawsuits, citing American laws against aiding and abetting an enemy of a friendly state – Israel – have convinced Lloyds Insurance to cancel coverage of flotilla ships.

Another suit filed last week warns that the ships can be seized for violating U.S. laws on the high seas.