Turkish trial on Mavi Marmara incident restarted on Thursday 23Feb13 February 23, 2013

Palestine News Network    -    21 February 2013

mavi-marmara_1792948c_340_220On Thursday, 21 February, Turkey’s trial in absentia of top Israeli military commanders regarding the May 2010 Mavi Marmara flotilla incident restarted, according to reports from the Jerusalem Post.

The trial’s first set of hearings on the case, which charges four former Israeli military commanders with inciting the deaths of nine Turks aboard the Mavi Marmara, started in November 2012, but the hearing was recessed after only a few days.

The commanders charged are former chief of staff Lt.-Gen. (res.) Gabi Ashkenazi, former OC Navy V.-Adm. (res.) Eliezer Marom, former OC Military Intelligence Maj.-Gen. (res.) Amos Yadlin and former Air Force Intelligence chief Brig.-Gen. (res.) Avishai Levy.

The case’s 144-page indictment presents charges totaling more than 18,000 years of life sentences and will include around 500 witnesses.  The indictment accuses the commanders of inciting murder and injury.

The Marvi Marmara was a part of a flotilla of ships attempting to breach Israel’s blockade of Gaza in May 2010.  Israeli forces stormed the ship while it was in international waters and nine activists were shot and killed.

The diplomatic relationship between Israel and Turkey, which was once Israel’s only Muslim ally, fell apart following this incident and have not been repaired.

According to JPost reports from Turkish media and various Twitter accounts of the case in November, the witnesses will include members of the families of the nine dead passengers, people from other ships in the flotilla as well as surviving activists from the Mavi Marmara.

The JPost also reported that they spoke to a top Israeli government legal official who said that the entire process is “political, not really judicial. It looks judicial, but it’s really not.”  He said that Israel is boycotting any involvement or cooperation with the case.

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