In 2008, human rights defenders with the Free Gaza Movement began bringing international publicity to the illegal Israeli Blockade of Gaza by attempting to sail unarmed, civilian boats to Gaza. From 2010-2016, the Gaza Freedom Flotilla coalition has continued to send boats to challenge the Israeli blockade of Gaza. Since 2008 approximately 31 boats have sailed to generate media coverage to the plight of 1.9 million inhabitants of Gaza living in the small coastal area 25 miles long and 5 miles wide, one of the most densely populated areas in the world. Israel has attacked Gaza three times in the past 8 years, 2009, 2012 and 2014, killing thousands and leaving hundreds of thousands without homes. The United Nations says that because of the Israeli land and sea blockade of Gaza, Gaza will become uninhabitable by 2020.
This blog contains information about the legal cases brought against the Israeli government and specific Israeli government officials for the assaults and murders of passengers on unarmed civilian boats that have attempted to break the illegal Israeli blockade of Gaza and for the return and/or compensation for the boats that the Israeli government have illegally seized.
The blog also contains a section on the boats and passengers that have sailed to break the blockade beginning with the Free Gaza Movement boats Liberty and Free Gaza in August 2008 and the Dignity in October, November and twice in December in 2008 that actually sailed into Gaza; the Spirit of Humanity in January and July 2009; the cargo ship Tali in February 2009; the 2010 Gaza Freedom Flotilla with 7 ships, the Mavi Marmara, the Sfendoni, Challenger 1, cargo ships Free Mediterranean, Dafne Y, Gazze, and Rachel Corrie in May 2010; the Irene Jewish Boat to Gaza in September 2010; eight boats in the 2011 Gaza Freedom Flotilla 2 that were prevented from sailing by the Greek government, The Audacity of Hope, Tahrir, Saoirse, Gernika, Julianno, Stefano Chairini, Louise Michel and Eleftheri Mesogeios ; Dignité Al Karama in July 2011; the Tahrir and Saoirse in November 2011; the Estelle in 2012; the Marianne, Rachel, Vittorio, Juliano 2 in 2015; the Women’s Boat to Gaza the Zaytouna-Oliva in September 2016; and Al Awda (The Return) and Freedom (two other boats got as far as Sicily (Mairead Maguire) and Greece (Filestine) but did not complete the entire 75 day voyage in 2018.