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Aid is getting into Gaza via the Israel-Egypt border – but it’s stop-start, laborious and not enough | World News


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The Israeli military has invited a large contingent of media organisations, including Sky News, to the Nitzana border crossing in the Negev Desert.

On the border between Israel and Egypt, it is currently the point through which all goods must pass before they can enter Gaza.

The purpose of the visit is to show the world that aid is getting into Gaza. And it’s true that trucks are making it in – but it’s stop-start and it’s a very laborious process.

Follow live: Israel-Hamas war latest

Before any goods are allowed to pass into Gaza, they must be security screened by the Israelis – a process that takes some time.

This is only happening at the Egypt-Israel Nitzana crossing where we were brought today.

The trucks arrive from Egypt on the Israeli side. There they are screened, sometimes several times, before passing back through to the Egyptian side of the border.

They then drive up to the Rafah crossing where they are checked again before passing into Gaza.

The Israelis say they have ‘eyes’ (probably drones) on the trucks as they drive from Nitzana to Rafah.

The trucks undergo several checks
The trucks undergo several checks

A sniffer dog checking a vehicle at the border
A sniffer dog checking a vehicle at the border

Since the 7 October Hamas attacks which triggered this conflict, an average of 38 trucks a day have crossed into Gaza through this stop-start process.

They are all required to pass through Nitzana and then snake back around through to the Rafah crossing.

Today’s expected figure is 96 trucks, which is encouraging but not nearly sufficient, according to UN officials.

The context is important here. Pre-war, about 500 trucks a day would get into Gaza.

The trucks would pass through various routes – either directly from Egypt through their Rafah/Salah Al Din crossing (primarily a foot crossing but increasingly used for goods) – or from Israel into Gaza via the Kerem Shalom crossing.

Gaza has been under attack since the war broke out

The northern Erez crossing between Israel and Gaza is for people (under stringent conditions) only.

It was badly damaged by Hamas during their 7 October attack.

There is no airport in Gaza. The Yasser Arafat International Airport was destroyed by Israel in 2001.

United Nations officials tell me that the 96 trucks set to make the journey today are a fraction of what’s needed.

“It’s not just the number of people in Gaza who need humanitarian aid, it’s the depth of their needs,” one UN official told me this week.

Read more:
Tens of thousands of civilians flee amid heavy fighting
Netanyahu says Israel will have ‘overall security’ role in Gaza

Colonel Moshi Tetro denies there is any humanitarian crisis in Gaza
Colonel Moshi Tetro denies there is any humanitarian crisis in Gaza

The Israeli military, which manages the Nitzana crossing, has a different perspective on the situation inside Gaza.

“There is no humanitarian crisis inside Gaza,” Colonel Moshi Tetro, head of the Coordination and Liaison Administration to Gaza, told me.

But multiple aid agencies and the United Nations, who are on the ground in Gaza, have said repeatedly that the situation is dire.

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Written by: radioroxi

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