IDF releases video of operation to seize ship, detain suspect after onboard fire

Army says suspect held after search of vessel that arrived off Haifa coast from Turkey; incident thought to be criminal; Turkish consul reportedly to meet with detained national

The Israel Defense Forces on Sunday released footage of an operation by naval forces to take over a cargo ship off the coast of Haifa following an attempt to damage the vessel.

In the aerial footage, forces can be seen approaching the ship in a smaller boat before boarding and gathering on the deck of the vessel.

The operation came after the IDF said it received a report overnight from a foreign ship anchored near the coast that a fire was started onboard by “unidentified elements.”

By the early afternoon, the army announced troops had taken control of the ship and searched the vessel together with police.

“During the searches the soldiers caught an unlisted passenger who was handed over to the Israel Police,” the IDF said. “The incident is over.”

The Turkish consul will meet with the detained passenger, the Ynet news site reported.

The ship, the MSC Canberra, was a few kilometers from Haifa. The Kan public broadcaster reported it arrived from the port of Mersin in southern Turkey and was flying a Panamanian flag.

The incident was suspected to be criminal and not terror related. There were no reports of injuries.

Further details of the incident were barred from publication by the military censor.

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