The Gaza Flotilla planned for this week is slated to set sail from Greece this Thursday or Friday, according to Palestine activists featured in an Agence France-Presse report.

AFP reported that some 10 boats with activists from 22 countries plan to set sail from Crete.

Among the many notables on the flotilla is American novelist Alice Walker.

Yesterday, Israel backed down from its threat to ban journalists covering the pending flotilla to Gaza from entering the country for a decade.

The gesture will promote transparency in coverage of the events, according to a release published by the Prime Minister's Office.

On Sunday, Israel's Government Press Office announced the nation would ban foreign journalists participating in the flotilla to deliver medicine and other aid items to Gaza, slated to set sail from European ports in the next few days. The prospective ban would last an entire decade.

The United States has long supported Israel as a bastion of democracy in the pre-Arab Spring Middle East. News of the pending ban caused waves in international media.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu heard about [the ban] on the news and asked to re-examine this issue because it's problematic, Israel's Deputy Prime Minister Moshe Yaalon told Reuters Monday.

There's no way to stop the media in this day and age if they [are on board] anyway. It's better not to clash with them.

Despite the escalation of long-running tensions over settlements and a flotilla to deliver aid to Gaza, Israel has recently started taking measures to woo Paris and other key member states of the United Nations, slated to vote on Palestine's bid for statehood at its General Assembly this September.

In the run-up to the fall, both Israel and Palestine are vying for France's support.

On diplomatic visit to the West Bank earlier this month, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe announced that Paris will hold an international peace conference between Israeli and Palestinian authorities.

Juppe hinted that if Israel declines France's invitation all options are open for the vote. U.S. officials had already pledged Washington's support to Israel in the bid for Palestinian statehood.

Palestine is currently recognized by 112 member states of the United Nations and needs only 18 more to obtain the two-thirds majority necessary for official recognition as a state at the UN General Assembly this September.

France's support would represent major leverage in favor of Palestine's race for recognition.

In addition to the two-thirds majority of member states, Palestine must garner the support of nine members of the UN Security Council, of which France is a permanent member.

In another conciliatory measure slated to boost Israel's standing with Paris, the Israeli army has finally removed a section of the West Bank barrier in Bil'in that obstructed Palestinian villagers from travelling freely to their lands. Originally built to prevent suicide bombers from entering Israeli territory, in 2007, the Israeli Supreme Court ruled that the Bil'in section of the partition fence was ineffective in strengthening security and caused an unnecessary burden to Palestinian locals.

Four years later, on the precipice of a UN vote that will decide Palestine's future in the international community, Israel is finally acting to make good on the Supreme Court ruling.