Greece arrests two over Gaza aid ship drama: police

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Greek port police on Sunday arrested the captain and owner of a ship for holding a group of pro-Palestinian activists who were attempting to deliver aid to Gaza, authorities said.

The captain and owner will be charged on Monday, and the activists were released and have disembarked, a police spokeswoman said.

Greek authorities launched an enquiry on Friday into events on the Strofades IV, which arrived in the port of Piraeus with a dozen activists on board.

The activists, who included seven Britons, said they had been held for several days without food or water.

The owners of the ship, Ionian Bridge Shipping Management, said that the activists had tried to storm the vessel as it left the Libyan port of Derna on Thursday, and denied that anyone had been detained against their will.

David Callander, an Irish activist, said the group had paid 82,000 dollars through an agent to hire the Strofades IV to take aid to Gaza, but the ship's captain "went mental" as they tried to set off earlier this week.

© 2010 AFP

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