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Argument: Israeli raid in international waters violates i-law

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Billie Bender. "Was Israel’s flotilla raid illegal or legally?" Tufts Roundtable. June 2nd, 2010: "the blockade is an act of war, casus belli, because Israel attacked a foreign flagged ship from Turkey. Under the Law of the Sea (more or less), any ship harboring in international waters that is forcefully boarded by a foreign entity is having its sovereignty violated."


South Africa's Department of International Relations called for the "highest level of international condemnation" following the attack. It said, "South Africa accordingly strongly condemns this action which reportedly took place in international waters, 65km off the coast of Gaza, in the early hours of Monday 31 May 2010. [...] For Israel to attack these civilian ships in international water is a gross violation of international law and is deserving of the highest level of international condemnation."[1]


Paul Joseph Watson. "Did Activists Attack Israeli Soldiers In Self-Defense?." Prison Planet.com. June 1, 2010: "The only thing that seems clear about yesterday’s tragic incident is the fact that Israeli forces illegally and aggressively boarded a humanitarian aid ship that was sailing in international waters. What happened afterwards takes two completely different directions depending on whose propaganda you listen to."


"Never mind the 'Freedom Flotilla.' Is Israel's Gaza blockade legal?" Christian Science Monitor. June 8th, 2010: "few legal experts agree that Israel can suspend the paramount UN Charter on the Law of the Sea to expand a blockade overnight or preemptively intercept ships.

Under the UN charter, vessels on the high seas are subject to the jurisdiction of the flag state of that vessel. No one can board. Exceptions include: a vessel that doesn’t fly a flag, a vessel suspected of being pirated, or vessels suspected of violating international sanctions, such as North Korean ships thought to carry nuclear materials. Even carrying weapons at sea doesn’t violate international law.

That’s why most international jurists say Israel cannot legally justify the boarding of a sovereign ship protected under the charter. “In legal terms, the Turkish ship [the biggest in the aid flotilla] was Turkish territory,” argues former British Ambassador Craig Murray, a fellow at the University of Lancaster School of Law.

Marcelo Kohen, a law professor at Geneva’s Graduate Institute of International Studies, agrees that the requirements needed to claim a San Remo justification were not complete."

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