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June 20th, 2010
09:59 PM ET

Tony Blair on Gaza Blockade

Israel says it will ease its blockade of Gaza.  Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the announcement following a meeting of the Israeli Security Cabinet Sunday.

The  announcement comes three weeks after Israel's deadly raid on a Gaza aid flotilla.

Israel says it will allow civilian goods to enter Gaza, but military equipment and weapons are still banned.  Its naval blockade of Gaza remains in place.

The U.S. welcomed the new policy, saying in a statement it will improve conditions for Palestinians in Gaza while preventing the entry of weapons.

A member of the Palestinian Liberation Organization executive committee said the move is, in part, a reaction to international pressure and "does not meet the minimal needs of the people of Gaza to live in dignity."

Special Middle East Envoy and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair was in Jerusalem working to ease the blockade.   He says he looks forward to working with the Government of Israel and other partners to implement  the new Gaza policy

Moments after the announcement, Mr. Blair spoke with CNN's Fredricka Whitfield in an extended interview.

Filed under: CNN Newsroom • Fredricka Whitfield • Josh Levs
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Tony Blair is a scam artist

    Blair gets paid millions for his continuing role as a collaborator in the greatest human-made catastrophe of our time, the slow-motion genocide of 1.5 million Palestinians, who are sentenced to lifelong imprisonment in the open-air prison known as Gaza. Blair led the UK into a tragic misadventure in Iraq, leading to the deaths of hundreds of thousands, and now here he is again with some wacky, do-nothing obstructionist group called The Quartet. Children are dying. Blair is hobnobbing with the wealthy elite. Sickening.

    June 21, 2010 at 8:05 am |
  2. Greg, Ontario

    "does not meet the minimal needs of the people of Gaza to live in dignity."

    Yeah living in dignity includes having rockets to launch and Iranian explosives for suicide bombers to kill innocent people on their way to market or children on their way to school. Everyone knows no matter what Isreal does it will never be enough for Hamas to seek peace. We should encourage Isreal to strike first and end the war before it starts, annex Gaza and deport the palastinians that don't want to live in peace.

    June 21, 2010 at 12:29 pm |
  3. Smith in Oregon

    If Israel continues to steal vessels flying NATO flags in International Waters, International Crimes must be lodged against Israeli Officials. To not do so makes a mockery of any possible sense of International Law and International Justice.

    Gaza Food and Medical Supply flotillas should make it known from the beginning they are heading to Egyptian ports to offload, and if intercepted in International Waters while carrying a NATO flagged country on their vessel's then Israel has committed numerous acts of piracy, kidnapping, theft to name just the beginning of criminal charges.

    June 23, 2010 at 3:48 am |

    Israel had on numerous occassions declared war on the United Nations when it broke all its resolutions while making the united States the pariah nation using the veto to condone Israel transgression .What a shame!!!???

    June 25, 2010 at 9:23 pm |