First convoy of humanitarian aid passes through Egypt border into Gaza
By Don Jacobson |
Oct. 21 (UPI) — A small convoy of 20 trucks carrying aid to besieged Palestinian civilians in Gaza passed through the Rafah border crossing with Egypt on Saturday, marking the first such relief since the start of the conflict.
The trucks carrying humanitarian aid such as food, water and medical supplies, passed into Gaza through the border crossing and will be distributed within the Palestinian enclave, the Palestinian Red Crescent announced.
The initial delivery came as the border crossing has opened to allow for modest levels of desperately needed aid to flow into Gaza as Palestinians faced severe shortages of food, medicine and water in the territory in the wake of Israeli military action taken in retaliation for a deadly assault by the militant group Hamas on Oct. 7 that killed 1,400 Israelis.
Palestinian health officials said Saturday 4,385 people in Gaza have died in the resulting Israeli bombardment campaign, including 1,756 children and 967 women.
“Today’s entry of 20 trucks is a welcomed glimpse of hope, but this miniscule aid represents a drop in the ocean,” the Red Crescent said in a statement. “We call on the international community to secure the continued flow humanitarian aid into Gaza including through the Israeli-controlled crossings.”
“We welcome today’s announcement that an aid convoy has entered Gaza, the first since the outbreak of hostilities on October 7,” added Martin Griffiths, U.N. Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator.