Israeli soldiers shot flotilla activists from choppers
Todays Zaman June 30, 2010
The Association of Human Rights and Solidarity for Oppressed Peoples (MAZLUM-DER) stated during a press conference on Monday that Israeli commandos shot at activists on the Mavi Marmara from their helicopters, according to autopsy reports.
Yasin Dıvrak, a lawyer for MAZLUM-DER, said the autopsy reports prepared by the Council of Forensic Medicine (ATK) proved that Israeli soldiers, contrary to their claims of self-defense, aimed to kill and started to shoot even before descending onto the Mavi Marmara, which was carrying humanitarian aid to the under-siege Gaza on May 31.
During the Israeli raid, nine peace activists were killed and dozens more injured. Israel claims that its soldiers attacked passengers in self-defense because some of the passengers assaulted Israeli soldiers with sticks and knives after they descended onto the ship. The autopsy reports also showed that the corpses of the activists were washed before being sent to Turkey and some alcohol had been found in their bodies.
The press conference was held by MAZLUM-DER İstanbul branch Chairman Cihat Gökdemir, lawyers Dıvrak and Selçuk Kar and the deputy chairman of the association, Gülden Solmaz. Dıvrak said: All the deaths occurred due to injuries caused by firearms. The ATK reports show that the bodies have been washed, so it was not possible to find any traces of chemicals or gun powder. We wonder why Israel washed the bodies of those who were killed.
Dıvrak added that since the bodies had been washed and all the clothes were extremely dirty it was not possible to determine the shooting range.
Most of the bullets did not stay in the bodies but entered and exited the bodies. Some bullets exited the skull but entered [the body] again, he stated.
Dıvrak underlined that a very unusual bullet was found in the brain of activist İbrahim Bilgen. He said this bullet surprised doctors because they have never seen this kind of bullet before. Israel claims that the soldiers were attacked and that they were defending themselves. But the autopsy reports show that this is not true. Most of the bullets came from above and entered the skulls. It is obvious that the bullets came from the choppers, he said.
Last updated 03/07/2010