Al Mezan Center for Human Rights managed to secure the release of a Palestinian fishing boat that was confiscated by the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) at around 8am on 25 March 2009, after the IOF gunboats opened fire at the boat, close to Rafah beach. The IOF also detained the Palestinian fishers who were on the boat, but released them the next day. The fishermen were identified: as Mohammed Abdullah Khalil An-Najar, 27; his brother Khalil, 22; Yousef Abdullah An-Najar, 19; and Hasan Khalil An-Najar, 19. The boat is owned by Hasan Khalil who is being held in an Israeli prison.
On 29 March 2009, an Al-Mezan lawyer delivered a complaint to both the Israeli Minister of Defense and the Commander of the Israeli Naval Forces, demanding that the boat be returned to its owners. The complaint also referred to Al Mezan's right to resort to court action. On 7 April 2009, Al Mezan received a response from the Israeli Navy that they would return the boat on 22 April 2009.
At around 4pm on 22 April 2009, the boat was returned through Kerem Shalom crossing, and Al-Mezan's lawyer made sure that it was received by its owners.
Al-Mezan Center secures return of Israeli-confiscated fishing boat to Gazans
Date: 24 / 04 / 2009 Time: 20:29
The fishermen were detained and the boat confiscated. While the Gazans were released the following day, the boat was not released until Wednesday, following court action by the Al-Mezan center.
According to the center a complaint was delivered to both the Israeli Minister of Defense and the Commander of the Israeli Naval Forces on 29 March demanding that the boat be returned to its owners.
On 7 April Al-Mezan received a response from the Israeli Navy saying they would return the boat on 22 April; it war returned through the Kerem Shalom crossing.