Middle East

Israel intercepts activist boat en route to Gaza

The Israeli navy says it has intercepted a boat carrying pro-Palestinian activists trying to break Israel's naval blockade of the Gaza Strip and is now escorting it ashore.

In a statement Wednesday, the military says naval forces stopped the boat in international waters and urged it to change course. When it refused, the navy says it stopped the boat and searched it. It says the search was "uneventful."

The boat is sponsored by the Freedom Flotilla Coalition, a group of pro-Palestinian groups based mostly in Europe. The Dutch-flagged boat is carrying 13 female activists from different countries headed by Mairead Maguire, an Irish Nobel Peace Prize laureate.

In 2010, Israel raided a Turkish-led flotilla bound for Gaza, killing 10 Turks.