Thu, June 03, 2010
World > Middle East > Gaza flotilla clash

Gaza-bound flotilla activists to arrive in Turkey: official

2010-06-03 03:30:05 GMT2010-06-03 11:30:05 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

An activist injured during Israeli attack on a Turkish aid ship bound for Gaza is stretchered onto an ambulance at the airport in Ankara, Turkey, June 2, 2010. Israel began expelling all activists seized during a raid on an aid convoy sailing to Gaza that has drawn international outrage. (Xinhua Photo)

ISTANBUL, June 2 (Xinhua) -- Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc said planes with activists from Turkey and other countries would arrive in Turkey late Wednesday night, semi- official Anatolia news agency reported.

The deputy prime minister, who arrived in Istanbul's Ataturk Airport to welcome the activists, was quoted by the report as saying "As a result of initiatives by our government, Israel accepted to transfer volunteers, the injured people and bodies of those who lost their lives to Turkey."

The raid by the Israeli commandoes on the aid-carrying international flotilla bound for Gaza at Monday dawn led to the death of 9 people on board. Many were also injured in the raid by the Israeli commandoes.

"Besides some 400 Turkish citizens, there are more than 200 volunteers from 32 countries. The planes carrying them will leave for Turkey later tonight," he added.

Local TV news reported that the first plane with two wounded activists has taken off from Israel and the second ambulance plane will take off from Tel Aviv soon.

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