Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Shurat HaDin Takes Next Step To Deny Essential Satellite Communications To #Flotilla2 (Update: Copy Of Complaint))

Couple of weeks ago, I blogged about Shurat HaDin and the 3-pronged approach being taken by Nitsana Darshan-Leitner to stop Flotilla2 from setting sail.

One element of that attempt centers around UK and US based global satellite company Inmarsat, whose network for communicating with ports, naval authorities and other vessels is essential--and without which the Flotilla would be unable to sail.

Shurat HaDin has already warned Inmarsat (PDF) that through its supplying of communications it is liable for any harm caused by the Flotilla.

In return,
the counsel for Inmarsat responded (PDF) that since the ships are not registered, owned or controlled by Hamas--Inmarsat is not liable.

Shurat HaDin disagrees, and is now taking the direct step of bringing a civil action against Inmarsat:
The plaintiff in the suit, Michelle Fendel, a resident of the Southern Israeli town of Sderot, asserts that under U.S. law, Inmarsat and its officers have aided and abetted terrorism by providing satellite services to the Gaza-bound ships. The Gaza Strip is controlled by Hamas, an Islamist movement designated by the US, the UK, Israel and the European Union as a terrorist group, and is subject to an Israeli naval blockade. Thousands of Qassam rockets launched by Hamas have landed in the area of Fendel's home in Sderot, which borders on Gaza, killing numerous Israeli civilians and injuring many more.

The complaint alleges that Inmarsat is one of the largest satellite telecommunications companies in the world and the main provider of maritime communication services. The Flotilla ships rely upon Inmarsat’s network to communicate with ports, naval authorities and other vessels and cannot sail without it.

...The lawsuit alleges that: "Inmarsat’s provision of satellite communication services to the Flotilla Ships constitutes a present and on-going danger to the life, person and property of Plaintiff Michelle Fendel and other residents of Sderot."

The attorneys for Fendel are asking the Miami Court to formally declare that Inmarsat's provision of satellite communication services to the Flotilla Ships constitutes a violation of American criminal statutes and endangers the life of the Sderot residents. In addition, they have asked the Court to grant a permanent injunction against Inmarsat which would require the company to immediately and permanently cease the provision of any services to any of Flotilla Ships.
Update: Here is a copy of the complaint against Inmarsat.

Now it remains to be seen how the suit will turn out--although I imagine since the Flotilla is soon to set sail the idea is prove to Inmarsat the severity of the suit and convince it to avoid the suit by agreeing to without its communications network from the Flotilla.

You can watch an interview with attorney Nitsana Darshan-Leitner of Shurat HaDin on Pajamas Media about the various measures Shurat HaDin is taking to thwart the flotilla.

Hat tip: IMRA

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