Palestinian boat fails to break 11

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"We want to remind the international community of their responsibility for the Palestinian people," Khaled al-Batsh, coordinator of the committee said at a press conference.

GAZA, May 29 (Xinhua) -- A Palestinian boat attempting to challenge Israel's 11-year maritime blockade on the Hamas-ruled territory was intercepted by Israel on Tuesday.

The boat, which carried 20 people, planned to sail out of the blockade zone of no more than six miles (9.6 km) imposed by Israel. But it only managed to sail for nine miles, said the organizer the Palestinian National Committee.

Fishing boats seen carrying a group of Palestinian patients and students trying to breach Israel's naval blockade on Gaza, at the sea in Gaza City, on May 29, 2018. (Xinhua/Stringer)

The committee held Israel responsible for the safety of the people on board.

Although Israeli government did not comment on the sailing, the Palestinian committee said in a statement that the Israeli military claimed to have intercepted the Palestinian vessel after it went out for over nine miles.

The passengers on board included injured Palestinians seeking medical treatment abroad, college students and graduates who seek jobs in other countries. Hundreds of Palestinians gathered at the pier to witness the voyage.

The sailing aimed to break the blockade Israel imposed on Gaza when Islamic Hamas movement seized the enclave by force in 2007 after routing Palestinian security forces.

The committee was also the organizer of the recent massive anti-Israeli Palestinian protests known as the "Great March of Return" held since March 200.

The sailing of the boat coincides with the eighth anniversary of Israel's raid on an international flotilla that attempted to break the Israeli blockade, in which nine people were killed and dozens of others injured.