World Bulletin / News Desk
Thousands of people are to march in central Istanbul to commemorate the fifth anniversary of the deadly 2010 Israeli raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla.
Bulent Yildirim, the head of the Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH) which organized the convoy for Gaza, said a march on Sunday would attract thousands of people.
The march will begin at 5 p.m. on May 31 from Fatih Mosque to Edirnekapi.
"Last year, nearly 200,000 people attended the commemorations. I think this number will increase," Yildirim said.
Six civilian ships in the aid flotilla were attacked in international waters by Israeli forces on May 31, 2010, as they tried to break Israel's blockade of the Gaza Strip.
Nine Turkish activists were killed and 30 other people were injured, including one activist who died nearly four years after being critically injured.
The raid raised tensions between Israel and Turkey, which recalled its ambassador from Tel Aviv.
Saying that they will give a message that the Turkish ship was part of a “fleet for freedom” and that the victims would not be forgotten, Yildirim said that the Mavi Marmara case was not only linked to Palestine or Turkey.
"It is the case of all the conscientious people across the world. I invite everyone to attend the commemoration march to prove it to Israel," Yildirim said.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu apologized to then Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2013 over the attack, but the two countries have not resolved whether, nor how much, compensation should be paid to the families of the victims.
-Ship to Gaza
Yildirim also noted that the IHH supports ‘Ship to Gaza’ -- a Swedish organization that aims to break the blockade of the Gaza Strip.
The Marianne, with nine people from Sweden and Norway on board, departed from Gothenburg port on May 10 as part of Freedom Flotilla III expedition.
The boat is carrying solar panels and medical equipment to Gaza.
The 1.8 million inhabitants of Gaza have been deprived of many of their most basic needs under the near decade-long blockade.
More than 2,100 Palestinians in the Gaza Strip were killed and 11,000 injured – mostly women and children – during Israel's 51-day Operation Protective Edge in July and August of 2014.Güncelleme Tarihi: 28 Mayıs 2015, 17:48