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US Delivers Emergency Aid to Gaza by Air Amid Humanitarian Crisis

US Delivers Emergency Aid to Gaza by Air Amid Humanitarian Crisis
Source (Google)

The US military, in coordination with the Royal Jordanian Air Force, conducted a humanitarian assistance airdrop into northern Gaza on Saturday, delivering much-needed food and water to the war-torn region.

The operation involved three US Air Force C-130 aircraft and US Army soldiers specialized in aerial delivery of supplies.

The airdrop delivered 41,400 meal equivalents and 23,000 bottles of water to "an area of great need, allowing for civilian access to the critical aid," according to a statement from US Central Command (CENTCOM).

The airdrop came as Gaza faces a dire humanitarian situation, with thousands of people suffering from malnutrition, dehydration, and disease amid a blockade and a prolonged conflict between Israel and Hamas.

According to the Health Ministry in Hamas-ruled Gaza, more than 30,000 people have been killed and over 70,000 injured since the war began in October 2023.

At least 23 children have died of malnutrition in the past week, the ministry said.

President Joe Biden announced the airdrop plan on Friday, saying it was part of a "sustained effort" to get more aid into Gaza, including by expanding the flow of aid through land corridors and routes.

He also said the US was working with the UN and other partners to establish a temporary pier in Gaza, to allow for the delivery of aid by sea.

Biden called for an immediate ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, and urged both sides to respect international humanitarian law and protect civilians.

Some international aid agencies, however, criticized the airdrop as insufficient and risky, saying it could endanger the lives of the people on the ground and create more chaos and violence.

They also said the airdrop did not address the root causes of the crisis, such as the blockade, the occupation, and the lack of political solution.

They called for a lifting of the blockade, a resumption of peace talks, and a respect for human rights and international law.

The US military said it was planning for potential follow-on airdrop missions, and that it was coordinating with the UN and other humanitarian actors to ensure the safe and effective distribution of the aid.

The military also said it was committed to supporting the humanitarian relief efforts and the diplomatic efforts to end the conflict and restore stability in the region.