A Limassol-bound flotilla carrying at least two dozen Palestinian patients and activists was reportedly blocked by Israeli forces, who fired warning shots when the boats broke a boundary off the coast Gaza.
According to Israeli daily Haaretz, Palestinian activists, students, and patients in need of medical care are on board, en route to Cyprus where they might later seek medical treatment in nearby Turkey.
Media reports suggested the passengers had valid passports.
Hundreds more boarded more than 30 vessels, according to Al Jazeera, but they said they would not cross the permitted boundary.
The activists say they hope to put an end to Israel’s blockade of Gaza, which has left more than two million Palestinians trapped since 2006.
Israel has cited security concerns and lack of peace for its siege on Gaza, but it has been criticised by many countries over violent means that it deploys to counter terrorism.
This is the first time in over a decade that activists violate the Israeli-imposed boundary six miles off the coast of the Gaza Strip and eight years since the Marmara flotilla incident, when a Turkish effort to bring aid to Gaza ended in tragedy with Israeli commandos killing ten people on board.