Mavi Marmara trial of 4 Israeli officials begins in Istanbul

Prosecutors seek life sentence for killing of 9 on ship

06 November, 12:41

(ANSAmed) - ANKARA, 6 NOVEMBER - The so called Mavi Marmara trial has begun today in Istanbul.

Prosecutors are seeking life imprisonment for the four Israeli officials accused of causing the deaths of nine Turkish citizens aboard the Mavi Marmara ship in 2010, which was trying to break down Gaza blockades.

Israel's chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi, Naval Forces Commander Eliezer Alfred Marom, Military Intelligence chief Major General Amos Yadlinir and Air Forces Intelligence head Avishai Levi, did not appear in court.

Israel has ruled out their extradition.

Hundreds of protestors shouting anti-Jewish sentiments gathered outside the court. After the assault by Israeli forces on the Mavi Marmara - the flagship of the "Gaza flotilla" which aimed to break the naval blockade around the Strip, Turkey froze diplomatic relations with Israel.

In order to repair relations, Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan wants Israel to issue a formal apology and to pay compensation to victims' families. Israel must also, says Erdogan, end Gaza blockades.(ANSAmed).

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