First plane of US aid for Gaza arrives in Egypt

A US military plane containing aid for Gaza arrives in Egypt on November 28, 2023. (CENTCOM)
A US military plane containing aid for Gaza arrives in Egypt on November 28, 2023. (CENTCOM)

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration announces that it delivered 54,000 pounds of medical items, food aid and winter gear for civilians in Gaza.

An Air Force C-17 landed in Egypt earlier today and is the first of three shipments being made this week, US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan says in a statement.

“With 1.7 million people internally displaced and 2.2 million in need of humanitarian assistance, increased humanitarian supplies are essential to saving lives and alleviating suffering for the most vulnerable,” USAID says in a statement.

The United Nations will take the aid from Egypt’s North Sinai region, which borders the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, into the stricken Palestinian territory itself, US officials say.

“The movement over the last four or five days of assistance has been so significant in volume that a backfill… is now needed and these planes are part of that backfill,” a senior US official told reporters on an embargoed call Monday.

The US shipment follow 2,000 trucks of aid that have entered Gaza since Egypt’s Rafah crossing was first opened on October 21, two weeks into the war.

Roughly 200 trucks of aid have entered Gaza each day of the ongoing truce after an average of just 45 trucks per day were entering Gaza in the month prior.

The Biden administration is aiming to double the daily amount of trucks after the truce concludes, with senior administration officials saying yesterday that they want commercial goods to begin entering Gaza again.

“In the coming days and weeks, US President Joe Biden and other senior members of the administration will continue to work to sustain and expand the international humanitarian response and rally the international community to urgently increase support to the UN Flash Appeal for Gaza,” Sullivan says.

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