“It is no longer possible to cover up or ignore Israel’s lawlessness. The international community must from now on say ‘enough is enough’. Dry statements of condemnation are not enough … There should be results.”
“When they boarded our boat, we resisted entirely peacefully. I sat on the floor and tried to reason with them, but the Israeli commandos physically attacked us. Fiachra (one of the Irish passengers aboard the flotilla) was dragged around the ground and I had a gun pointed in my face by a screaming commando. His mania was so intense that I genuinely feared for my life. Others received beatings.”
“While in Israeli custody I, along with everyone else was subjected to endless abuse and flagrant acts of disrespect. Women and elderly were physically and mentally assaulted… in stress positions while hand cuffed to the point of losing circulation of blood in our hands. We were lied to incessantly, in fact I am awed at the routineness and comfort in their ability to lie, it is remarkable really. We were abused in just about every way imaginable and I myself was beaten and choked to the point of blacking out… and I was beaten again while in my cell.”
“We didn’t expect a ship with 32 different nationalities on board, with aid from 50 different countries on board, would be attacked in such a brutal manner… They began by throwing stun grenades on to the deck of the ship when people were in the middle of morning prayers. Then they began using rubber bullets, they tried to come aboard the ship from the side. People repelled the commandos with water cannons they had set up on the side of the ship. Then the Israelis used helicopters to drop people onto roof and there were scuffles on the roof. The Israeli soldiers had already opened fire on the ship, so people were grabbing anything they could to stop the attack in international waters.”
“They got very aggressive and ordered us to come down. There was one older man who was a little slow, so the Israelis attacked him with an electric stun gun. He was in a lot of pain. So was another passenger who was covered in paint after being hit with a paint ball missile. The commandos searched the ship thoroughly and emerged waving a razor and a metal-box cutting tool, which they claimed were “weapons” intended to be used against them.
“All the passengers were then herded into a group, with armed guards standing watch as the ship was taken to Israel When we got off… we were made to walk down a corridor of armed commandos who filmed all of us with cameras. They stole my mobile phone, my money, my clothes and my credit cards.” Mankell said that he was held in a cell for 24 hours along with a Swedish Member of Parliament and then deported even “without his socks”.