Auckland activist Harmeet Sooden flies to Greece today to board a ship that will try to deliver aid to the Gaza Strip.

Sooden is accusing the New Zealand Government of failing to take a stance in support of the flotilla or protection of its citizens.

When Israel prevented the first flotilla from reaching Gaza a year ago, nine people died and more were injured in a confrontation.

The latest flotilla intended to carry humanitarian aid to Hamas-controlled Gaza.

Israeli officials argued aid flotillas could be used as a cover to help supply weapons to Hamas, an Islamist group which refused to recognise Israel and regularly fired rockets and mortars into the Jewish state.

Palestinians believed the Israeli sea blockade illegal, saying it was helping strangle the underdeveloped Gazan economy.

Mr Sooden, who made world headlines when held captive in Iraq in 2006, intended to be aboard the 25-metre Canadian vessel Tahrir, along with New Zealand-born Vivienne Porzsolt, who was part of an Australian group.

The "Freedom Flotilla" was to include about 10 vessels with 1000 passengers.

Mr Sooden sought a Government assurance it would protect its citizens involved in the flotilla.

In response the Government advised the Israeli's Ambassador of the participation and stated expectations that if New Zealand citizens were detained they were treated appropriately and within international obligations.

"As the flotilla doesn't intend to enter Israeli waters, the only way we can end up in Israeli custody is by being kidnapped in international waters - something Israel has been doing to civilians since the 1970s," Mr Sooden said.

"Despite requests, the New Zealand Government refuses to state its position on the legality of Israel's blockade of Gaza. The natural conclusion, therefore, is that the Government, in choosing to subordinate itself to United States foreign policy, condones the blockade."

The Red Cross and others have condemned the blockade and say it is illegal.

"Israel like New Zealand has a duty to defend its citizens, but it has no right to raid our ships to enforce an unlawful blockade," Mr Sooden said.

- NZPA