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Gaza Flotilla: Tahrir's Run for Freedom Stopped by Greek Coast Guard

Canadian Boat left port then followed and controlled by Greek coast guard - being forced back to shore
by Canada Gaza Boat
Agios NIkolaos, Crete - Eyewitnesses say on Monday, kayaks surrounded the Coast Guard ship that's shadowing the Tahrir and gave the Canadian ship a head start on its run for the open sea.
The Greeks quickly cleared the kayaks out of the way and gave chase. The passenger ferry was not able to outrun the police launch and the Tahrir was swiftly corralled.
Passengers tried to protect the wheelhouse by draping it with netting and blocking doorways by sitting in and linking arms. Despite their efforts, the Hellenic Coast Guard boarded the Tahrir and forced it to turn back to Agios Nikolaos around 6:30 local time.

Photos: Coast Guard try to enter @CanadaBoatGaza wheelhouse, passengers non-violently resist. via @Jleerankin
On Twitter: Search #Flotilla2 or follow @CanadaBoatGaza

Le texte fran├žais suit le texte anglais --
2011-07-04 11:25 EDT
Canadian Boat left port then followed and controlled by Greek coast guard - being forced back to shore
For Immediate Release
July 4, 2011
The Canadian Boat to Gaza (CBG), the Tahrir, to set sail today as part of Freedom Flotilla II
Agios Nikolaos, Greece - With the support of Greek civil society and people from all around the world the Tahrir is casting off from Greece today.
"The Tahrir is leaving port in Crete, and we are breaking through Israel's Gaza blockade which now extends to Greek ports," said David Heap from aboard the Tahrir. "Israel's expansion of the Gaza blockade to Greece is just the latest example of how the blockade of Gaza is about attacking freedom, not increasing security."
Article 13.2 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that "Everyone has the right to leave any country". Preventing flotilla ships from leaving Greek ports is a clear violation of this human right.
"Greece has no right to detain foreign-flagged ships in its ports other than for purposes of assuring seaworthiness via timely inspection. And they cannot interfere with 'innocent passage' through their territorial waters, and this passage is definitely innocent," said Richard Falk, American professor of international law and an appointee to two United Nations positions on the Palestinian territories.
"Greece's position is disturbing but this should not divert our attention from Israel and its illegal and inhumane blockade of Gaza. Israel is the source of the problem and it will be held accountable by the international community -- sooner or later," said Sandra Ruch, from the Tahrir steering committee.
Support actions have been and continue to be held at Greek consulates all over Canada (as well as in cities all over the world) calling on the Greek government to end its support of the Israeli blockade of Gaza and immediately lift the blockade it is imposing on the Flotilla boats from Greece's ports.
The Canadian Boat to Gaza has sent a letter to all Greek MPs asking them to let the flotilla boats go:
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