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The United Nations is pleased to receive the initial Gaza relief convoy, but stresses the need for additional ones.
Middle East World News

The United Nations is pleased to receive the initial Gaza relief convoy, but stresses the need for additional ones.

A fleet of 20 trucks traveled through the Rafah border with Egypt, delivering crucial aid from the Egyptian Red Crescent and the UN. The supplies included a sufficient amount of water for 22,000 individuals, but it would only last for a single day.

The items were given permission to pass through and be received by the Palestinian Red Crescent, with assistance from the United Nations.

Mr. Griffiths, in a statement posted on his official X account (formerly known as Twitter), expressed confidence that this delivery will mark the beginning of a lasting commitment to deliver necessary provisions – such as food, water, medicine, and fuel – to the people of Gaza in a secure, reliable, and unhindered manner.

‘Catastrophic’ humanitarian situation

After several days of intense negotiations with all parties involved, the delivery on Saturday was successfully arranged to ensure the prompt resumption of aid operations under appropriate circumstances.

According to Mr. Griffiths, the humanitarian crisis in Gaza has become even more dire since the start of hostilities. It is crucial that aid is provided to those in need throughout Gaza and in appropriate amounts.

He stated that the citizens of Gaza have faced years of hardship and it is unacceptable for the global community to continue neglecting them.

‘Lifeline’ amid shortages

The only open crossing with Gaza is the Rafah crossing, where hundreds of trucks are waiting to enter. The supply of essential items in Gaza is diminishing.

The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) also declared that the organization has sent medical supplies across the border, but the demand exceeds what has been provided.

On X, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the leader of WHO, emphasized the importance of ensuring the safe delivery of more convoys, ensuring the safety of all humanitarian workers, and maintaining continuous access for health assistance.

The World Health Organization stated that hospitals in Gaza are at their breaking point because of a lack of medicine and medical supplies. These are crucial for individuals who are injured or dealing with long-term illnesses.

Food on the move

The WFP announced that a convoy was transporting 60 metric tonnes of emergency food, consisting of canned tuna, wheat flour, pasta, canned beans, and canned tomato paste.

Cindy McCain, Executive Director of WFP, stated that the current situation in Gaza is dire and this food is urgently required. She emphasized the importance of ongoing safe access and noted that while the 20 trucks are a significant first step, more convoys are needed.

The World Food Programme (WFP) currently has 930 metric tonnes of emergency food supplies located at or near the Rafah border. These supplies will be distributed as soon as access is granted. They are crucial for restocking the agency’s depleting food reserves in Gaza.

Since the beginning of the crisis, WFP has aided approximately 520,000 individuals and is increasing efforts to assist 1.1 million individuals in the next two months. This aid includes daily deliveries of fresh bread to those gathered in UN shelters in areas with permitted access.

The World Food Programme provides flour to bakeries that have been contracted to produce bread for distribution. Unfortunately, due to shortages of electricity and fuel, numerous bakeries have been forced to cease operations, with one even being affected on Wednesday.

A life or death situation.

UNICEF reported that the convoy carried over 44,000 bottles of drinking water, which is sufficient for 22,000 individuals for a single day.

“The Executive Director of the agency, Catherine Russell, emphasized the urgency of providing water to the one million children in Gaza facing a dire protection and humanitarian emergency. Timely delivery of water is crucial and can mean the difference between life and death.”

The delivery is just a small contribution to the vast needs in Gaza, where essential infrastructure such as water and sanitation systems have been destroyed.

According to UNICEF, the water supply in Gaza is currently only at five percent of its usual capacity. This means that the nearly 2.3 million people living there are now forced to survive on just three litres of water per person per day.

Protect every child

Approximately one million individuals have been forced to leave their homes, with approximately half of them being children. Many of these children are currently residing in cramped shelters that lack proper access to clean water, sanitation, and hygiene. This poses a serious threat to their health as it increases the risk of disease outbreaks.

Ms. Russell emphasized the importance of safeguarding children and ensuring that humanitarian workers have a safe means of reaching them and their families.

“The primary focus should be on ensuring that all children are safeguarded from any harm, and that they receive the necessary special care and protection they are entitled to under international humanitarian law,” she stated.

UNICEF has prepared extra emergency resources for a potential 250,000 individuals at the Rafah border crossing to be delivered to Gaza within a few hours. Further aid is also en route.

“The source of this information is the United Nations News Centre.”