U.K. airdrops food into Gaza amid rising concerns over aid distribution-PHOTO

U.K. airdrops food into Gaza amid rising concerns over aid distribution-PHOTO
# 26 March 2024 14:50 (UTC +04:00)

The British Defense Ministry said its armed forces dropped 10 metric tons of food in the country’s first airdrop into the Gaza Strip on Monday and urged Israel to offer more land border crossings and port access to increase the volume of aid, APA reports citing The Washington Post.

“The UK’s goal is to use every route possible to deliver life-saving aid, whether that is by road, air or new routes via the sea,” Defense Secretary Grant Shapps said in a statement Tuesday. “We also continue to call on Israel to provide port access and open more land crossings in order to increase incoming aid deliveries to Gaza.”

Gaza is in the throes of an escalating hunger crisis, with humanitarian agencies and other experts repeatedly warning that a famine is imminent and that current levels of aid are woefully insufficient. Aid deliveries have also been stalled by Israeli border inspections, which NGOs say have led to the arbitrary rejection of supplies, as well as by fierce fighting in some parts of Gaza.

In coordination with the Royal Jordanian Air Force, the British Royal Air Force flew an RAF A400M from Amman, Jordan, to the northern coastline of Gaza, where it dropped water, rice, cooking oil, tinned goods, flour and baby formula using parachutes. “The drop zones were surveyed before and during the airdrop to ensure aid was delivered directly to civilians,” the British Defense Ministry said.

The drop was one of eight that day by Jordan’s armed forces in collaboration with other nations.

Humanitarian groups expressed heightened concern this week when Israel said it would stop working with UNRWA, the U.N. agency that distributes most aid to Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. On Monday, an Israeli government spokesperson said the organization “perpetuates the conflict” rather than contributing to conditions for peace.

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