Khalid Omar Ali, arrested with concealed knives near the parliament on Thursday, claimed to have been an activists aboard the Mavi Marmara, where IDF soldiers were attack with knives and metal rods.
The man arrested carrying knives close to the parliament in London on Thursday, was on board a Gaza flotilla ship raided by Israeli soldiers in 2010, the Reuters news agency reports.
The man, named by sources to the agency as 27-year-old Khalid Omar Ali, is being held in custody on suspicion of terrorism offense and possession of an offensive weapon. British police said that he was being monitored by security services, and was arrested as part of a security operation.
Investigators told Reuters that they did not think that Ali’s participation in the flotilla was linked to the incident on Thursday.
In May 2010 nine Turkish citizens were killed after Israeli commandos raided the Mavi Marmara, part of a flotilla that was attempting to reach Gaza. An Israeli inquiry found that the soldiers opened fire after the activists aboard the ship attempted to attack them with knives and metal rods. Ten Israeli commandos were injured in the incident.
According to Reuters, a man identified as “Ali” features on an activist’s website in 2010. In a video he says that he was also on the ship Strofades IV which was boarded by Greek commandos after a hostage situation developed after a disagreement with the vessel’s captain.
“Ali” also reportedly discussed his aim to join the Road to Hope convoy which aimed to deliver aid to Gaza via Egypt in 2010.
Israel has maintained a blockade of the enclave for the past 10 years, limiting the movement of goods and people in a move it says is necessary to contain Hamas. Egypt imposed a blockade in 2013.
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