WASHINGTON – A 19-year-old man with dual U.S.-Turkish citizenship was among the nine people killed in the Israeli raid on an aid flotilla in the eastern Mediterranean, the State Department said Thursday. That potentially complicates the Obama administration’s attempts to remain neutral in the crisis.
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said the victim was Furkan Dogan and that U.S. authorities in Turkey had met with Dogan’s father to express condolences and to offer U.S. consular services. She added that two other American citizens had been injured – one in the raid and the other during a subsequent protest – and the U.S. was seeking information about all three from Israel.
“We are in constant contact with the Israeli government attempting to obtain more information about our citizens,” she told reporters.
A broader problem for the Obama administration is what to do about the Israeli blockade of Gaza that the flotilla was trying to break through. The administration supports Israel’s view that measures must be taken to prevent, or at least minimize, the smuggling of weapons into Gaza that could be used to attack Israel.
But Clinton said in her remarks to reporters that the administration is searching for new answers.