Israel holds drill for next Gaza-bound flotilla

AP , Wednesday 15 Jun 2011

The Israeli military says it's holding a drill ahead of the next Gaza-bound flotilla with pro-Palestinian activists who could try to breach Israel's naval blockade of the territory.

Last year, an Israeli commando raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla left nine activists dead and propelled the blockade controversy to center stage of international politics. Israel said its soldiers were defending themselves.

A military spokeswoman would not provide details of the drill under way Wednesday.

Israel's Army Radio says commandoes were practicing the takeover of a ship and that troops have been trained to board vessels more quickly than they did last year to minimize any violent confrontations.

The flotilla is to depart at the end of June from various European ports.

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