The Freedom Flotilla has united Lebanon which is on the edge of a huge political crisis due to the withdrawal of the deputies of Hezbollah's political wing from the government. Thousands of people of different religions and political groups joined the night organized for Mavi Marmara by "Inter Community Dialogue Society" in the Lebanese capital Beirut.
The Lebanese group chose Bulent Yildirim as the "man of the year" for his role in the organization of the recent Freedom Flotilla. Ahmet Dogan, the father of Furkan Dogan; İsmail Bilgen, the son of the martyr Ibrahim Bilgen, the columnist of Turkey's Yeni Şafak newspaper Hakan Albayrak, Turkey's Gerçek Hayat magazine Middle East representative Adem Ozkose, the IHH executive board members Omer Faruk Yilmaz and Kemal Ozdal were presented plaques.
"Mavi Marmara will Keep Going"
Bulent Yildirim, head of the IHH, said that the Mavi Marmara united all the people of conscience from all around the world at his speech at the Mavi Marmara night. He stated that the siege of Gaza could only be lifted with an alliance of the virtuous of the entire world and the Mavi Marmara ship would resume her mission. “The pouring blood of the Mavi Marmara martyrs for Palestine united the blood of Arabs, Turks and Kurds. The Mavi Marmara ship constituted a new sense of brotherhood. Israel will be definitely defeated, because we are struggling for the oppressed." Yildirim also stated that the Mavi Marmara ship was became one of the ships which left a mark in the history after the Noah's Ark and the Titanic. Bulent Yildirim finished his speech with peace wishes for Lebanon.
The martyr Furkan Dogan's father Ahmet Dogan said that the death of his son was changed the perspective of the world toward Palestinian issue. Dogan continued that it was very hard to get used to his son's death, but he wasn't regret to let Furkan be on board. He said “Furkan always said there was a price to pay for the freedom of Palestine. He had done what he said; he paid the price that would end the pain of the Gazan children. We are proud of all the martyrs of the Mavi Marmara as the families."
Ismail Bilgen, the son of the Mavi Marmara martyr Ibrahim Bilgen, said that his father was a beautiful example of struggling for the oppressed people and he will continue to do that.