The United States confirms the arrival of first aid trucks via the Gaza sidewalk

The United States confirms the arrival of first aid trucks via the Gaza sidewalk

Image source, Getty Images

Comment on the photo, Trucks were lined up near the beach waiting to transport aid to Gaza

  • author, Vicky Wong
  • Role, BBC News

The US military confirmed that the first shipment of humanitarian aid arrived in Gaza via a temporary floating dock.

US Central Command said aid trucks began moving to the beach at around 09:00 local time (07:00 GMT) on Friday.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said 8,400 plastic shelters had been delivered. About 500 tons of British aid, including tents, hygiene kits and forklifts, are expected to arrive in Gaza via the dock built by the US armed forces in the coming weeks.

However, Mr Sunak said the sea route was “not the only solution” to the humanitarian crisis in the enclave.

“We need to see more land routes open, including through the Rafah crossing, to ensure more aid safely reaches civilians who need help most.”

British Foreign Secretary Lord Cameron said: “The people of Gaza are at risk of famine and in desperate need of supplies – and Israel must ensure that land routes are open and aid is safely delivered to where it is needed.”

Both Mr Sunak and Lord Cameron reiterated their calls for the Israelis to fulfill their commitment to allow at least 500 aid trucks a day into Gaza, where some 2.2 million people are in desperate need of food, shelter and other aid.

He added that it was important to “immediately open” the Rafah crossing, which Israel seized last week. Israel and Egypt blame each other for closing the crossing.

The dock is expected to provide access for 90 trucks carrying aid initially, then rising to 150 once it is fully operational.

British personnel are working with their American counterparts on board RFA Cardigan Bay to build and operate the pier.

The United States began building the floating base weeks ago to facilitate the delivery of aid to Gaza while Israel continues its military campaign against Hamas.

Then smaller US military ships – capable of carrying between five and 15 truckloads of aid – transferred it to the floating dock, which is several hundred meters long and anchored to the beach in Gaza.

Trucks drove along the pier before unloading aid at the marshaling yard on the beach.

The authorities said that the United Nations, primarily the World Food Programme, would be responsible for distributing the aid.

The Israeli offensive began after Hamas militants stormed southern Israel on October 7, killing 1,200 people and taking 252 others to Gaza hostage.

More than 35,000 Palestinians have been killed since then, according to figures from the Ministry of Health run by Hama.

Comment on the photo, The aid will be collected from a floating base before being transported to Gaza

Deliveries to Gaza have slowed to a trickle. Sending aid by land can be dangerous, with convoys sometimes being looted by gangs and attacked by desperate civilians.

Image source, Ministry of Defense

Comment on the photo, The United Kingdom government confirmed that British employees helped deliver sufficient supplies to feed 11,000 people.

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