Friday, August 20, 2010

Israeli Soldiers Stole Laptops from Flotilla; Sold Laptops to Other Soldiers, All Arrested

An Israeli soldier and an officer are suspected of stealing several laptop computers from an international aid flotilla that was raided by commandos on May 31, 2010 while trying to break the blockade of Gaza.

According to Today's Zaman (Turkish) website, one soldier suspected of selling the computers was arrested on August 18 together with three other soldiers who bought the stolen goods.

Military police also arrested a second lieutenant suspected of stealing the computers from one of the ships. Police say they believe the second lieutenant stole four to six laptops from the ships, after the ships were docked at the Israeli port of Ashdod.

The three soldiers who admitted to buying the laptops said they were told the laptops were stolen from the flotilla, but did not report the theft to their commanders. They are also expected to face trial.

The aid ships were raided by Israeli commandos. Nine activists -- eight Turks and one Turkish-American -- were killed by the commandos. Turkey has recalled its ambassador to Israel, as a result of the raids, and has threatened to end diplomatic relations with Israel unless Israel apologizes for the raids.

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