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Ambassador: Role of Azerbaijani citizens in 'Flotilla of Freedom' not to affect Azerbaijan-Israel relations

Politics Materials 2 June 2010 12:51
The participation of two Azerbaijani citizens in the “Flotilla of Freedom" will not affect Azerbaijani-Israeli relations, Israeli Ambassador to Azerbaijan Michael Lavon Lotem said.
Ambassador: Role of Azerbaijani citizens in 'Flotilla of Freedom' not to affect Azerbaijan-Israel relations

Editor's note: Israeli ambassador's comments were added in the article

The participation of two Azerbaijani citizens in the "Flotilla of Freedom" will not affect Azerbaijani-Israeli relations, Israeli Ambassador to Azerbaijan Michael Lavon Lotem said.

He noted that two Azerbaijani citizens were detained by Israel on board a vessel of the "Flotilla of Freedom," and are now located in a special zone for prisoners. They will be sent back to Azerbaijan on next with flight, he said.

Two Azerbaijani citizens were among 124 foreigners deported from Israel last night to Jordan, the Azerbaijani Embassy in Jordan told Trend over the telephone.

The deportation process began Wednesday night. Their names have not yet been released.

The embassy will provide the necessary assistance to Azerbaijanis on their arrival to Amman.

If the two Azerbaijani citizens chose to leave Israel voluntarily, then they may be in Jordan with the other deported foreign nationals, the Israeli Foreign Ministry told Trend over telephone from Jerusalem earlier.

Israel is looking to secure the departure of all the individuals as soon as possible. Everyone who chose to cooperate with the Israeli authorities was allowed leave the country voluntarily, the ministry said.

The Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry is working to clarify the names of its citizens, Foreign Ministry spokesman Elkhan Polukhov told Trend.

About 682 activists will be deported, local media reported with reference to the Interior Ministry. Forty-five voluntarily agreed to deportation and left Israel Tuesday, RIA Novosti reported.
 
"It was decided that the detainees would be immediately deported under procedures specified by the law. The Interior Ministry announced that the departures will start tonight and they are expected to be completed within approximately 48 hours," the government reported.
The Israeli Special Forces conducted an operation in neutral waters Sunday night to intercept the "Flotilla of Freedom." The six vessels carring at least 600 human rights activists, mostly Turkish citizens, and thousands of tons of humanitarian goods, moved toward a blocked Palestinian enclave. Nineteen activists died in the ensuing clash between the flotilla and the activists.

After the fleet's interception, according to the Interior Ministry, representatives of nearly 40 countries were sent to Israeli prisons. More than half are citizens of Turkey. The rest are citizens of Australia, Algeria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Belgium, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the UK, Germany, Greece, Egypt, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Canada, Kuwait, Lebanon, Mauritania, Macedonia, Malaysia, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Serbia, Syria, the United States, France, Czech Republic, Sweden and South Africa.

Israeli will inspect the goods and then forward them to their destination via ground border crossings.

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