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General News    H3'ed 7/2/09

Ireland Calls for Release of Kidnapped Nationals Held in Israel

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Ireland's Foreign Affairs Minister called for the release of Nobel laureate Mairead Maguire and another Irish national currently detained in Israel following the seizure of  the Free Gaza boat, Spirit of Humanity.


According to, Israeli Occupation Forces kidnapped 21 Human Rights workers aboard the ship, including Nobel laureate Mairead Maguire & former U.S. Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, and confiscating medicine, toys and olive trees.


On July 2 the Free Gaza Team wrote:


"Ireland's Foreign Affairs Minister Michea'l Martin today called for the swift release of two Irish nationals currently detained in Israel following the June 30 seizure of a boat en route to Gaza with humanitarian aid.


"The two, Nobel Peace Prize winner Mairead Maguire and Derek Graham, are awaiting deportation following the seizure of vessel The Spirit of Humanity.

"In a statement, Minister Martin said his department has been closely following the situation and was in ongoing contact with Israeli authorities.


"My immediate priority is ensuring the safety and welfare of Ms. Maguire and Mr. Graham and securing their release as soon as possible," the minister said.

"I have been assured by the Israeli authorities that they are both well and are being properly treated. An officer from the Irish Embassy in Tel Aviv visited yesterday with Ms. Maguire and Mr. Graham to provide assistance and will endeavour to make a further consular visit today"


"I would again renew my call for the release of Ms. Maguire and Mr. Graham as well as the other nineteen passengers detained on The Spirit of Humanity," he added.


" I would also call upon the Israeli Government to ensure that the humanitarian supplies for the people of Gaza being transported on The Spirit of Humanity are made available as soon as possible to the Palestinian authorities for distribution."


"The minister called the current Israeli blockade of Gaza 'completely unacceptable" and called for all border crossings into the coastal salient to be opened to humanitarian and commercial traffic."


A press conference about the incident was held on Cyprus on Wed.


News media in the US has been silent. also publishes  the latest updates from their Twitter account at

On Thursday, at around noon EST,  this twitter was posted:  Cynthia: State Department, White House officials taken no strong public stance to condemn illegal actions of Israel.






Press Conference, Today, Journalist House, Nicosia, 17:00-17:30 Wednesday, 01 July 2009 11:29  Written by Free Gaza Team




Cynthia McKinney and the Spirit of Humanity Crew are captured and detained by the Israel Navy



photos of Spirit of Humanity used with permission:" about="click here rel="cc:attributionURL" href=""> / CC BY-SA 2.0


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Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing since she was a hippie. She began writing for OpEdNews in Feb, 2004. She became a Senior Editor in August 2012 and Managing Editor in January, (more...)

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