Update: An earlier report of 16 casualties was based on radio reports shortly after the incident. Media outlets, including Haaretz, are reporting the military’s tally of nine activists killed.
Update 2: The U.N. Security Council held an emergency meeting called by Turkey to discuss the raid. More from: CNN, Haaretz
Activists trying to bring humanitarian aid to the blockaded Gaza Strip ran afoul of the Israeli military on Sunday. Shots were fired after masked Israeli gunmen descended from helicopters hovering over the flotilla as it made its way through international waters.
An Israeli radio station reported that 14 to 16 civilians were dead. (Latest reports say nine were killed).
Al Jazeera, which had a reporter on the lead ship, showed activists using sticks to fight commandos.
Life on the “freedom flotilla” earlier today:
The activists were not carrying guns, but television footage shown by al-Jazeera and Turkish television channels show hand-to-hand fighting, with activists wearing life-jackets striking commandoes with sticks.
The Israeli army said its troops were assaulted with axes and knives.
The television footage did not show firing but shots could be heard in the background. One man was shown lying unconscious on the deck, while another man was helped away.
A woman wearing hijab, the Muslim headscarf, was seen carrying a stretcher covered in blood.