The Rafah border crossing has been reopened, permitting the entry of a limited number of aid trucks into Gaza. A small convoy from Egypt has entered the Gaza Strip, carrying much-needed medical and food supplies. Before heading into Gaza, over 200 trucks, carrying approximately 3,000 tonnes of aid, had been stationed near the crossing for several days.
Hamas’s media office stated that the relief aid convoy scheduled for today consists of 20 trucks carrying medicine, medical supplies, and a limited quantity of canned food supplies. Martin Griffiths, the UN’s emergency relief coordinator, expressed his appreciation for the delivery, which followed extensive negotiations with all relevant parties to ensure a swift resumption of aid operations in Gaza under suitable conditions. Griffiths expressed confidence that this delivery would begin a sustained effort to provide essential supplies, including food, water, medicine, and fuel, to the people of Gaza in a safe, reliable, unconditional, and unimpeded manner.
For the past two weeks, Israel has imposed a blockade on the territory and conducted airstrikes in response to a rampage by Hamas fighters on towns in southern Israel on October 7. While the reopening of the Rafah crossing is considered significant and may lead to additional aid reaching Gaza, experts emphasise the urgent need for more assistance. The 20 trucks are a relatively small number compared to the approximately 100 trucks of aid that Gaza used to receive daily before the conflict. Many people in Gaza are facing severe shortages, with some having only one meal a day and limited access to clean water. Hospitals are struggling with low supplies of medicine and fuel for their generators amid a widespread blackout.