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Dublin: 11 °C Friday 10 July, 2020

British couple's message in a bottle reaches Gaza

They had thrown the bottle into the sea during a romantic holiday on the Greek island two months earlier.

Image: Amornchaijj via Shutterstock

A MESSAGE IN a bottle cast into the sea by a holidaying British couple on the island of Rhodes has washed up on the blockaded Gaza Strip,

Fisherman Jihad al-Soltan retrieved the bottle while fishing on 15 August.

Using the email address supplied, his family contacted the senders of the letter, Bethany Wright and her boyfriend Zac Marriner.

They had thrown the bottle into the sea during a romantic holiday on the Greek island two months earlier. The note read:

We are currently on holiday in Rhodes and we would love to know how far this bottle got – even if it’s just the next beach.

It had travelled a lot further, around 800 kilometres (500 miles), before Soltan retrieved it.

“They never expected it to reach Gaza!” he said.

The crowded coastal territory is largely closed off to the world under a crippling, decade-long Israeli blockade aimed at isolating Hamas, the Islamist movement which runs the territory.

Israel and Hamas have fought three wars since 2008.

Egypt, the only other country that shares a border with Gaza, has also largely sealed its frontier.

Fishing off the northern part of the strip, adjacent to Israel, is limited to six nautical miles offshore and the Israeli navy regularly fires at Palestinians at the zone’s outer limit.

Post to Gaza usually goes through Israeli security measures.

© AFP 2017

Read: Young footballers from Gaza arrive in Cork for Mardyke Arena game>

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