Gaza: Aid delivery via floating dock welcomed, but land routes ‘more important’

A floating dock for the delivery of humanitarian supplies was built off the coast of Gaza.
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A floating dock for the delivery of humanitarian supplies was built off the coast of Gaza.
  • UN News

OCHA warned that the maritime corridor cannot replace critical land routes, which are the quickest and most effective way of delivering humanitarian assistance in the besieged enclave, where more than two million Palestinians desperately need food, shelter and other assistance.

“Any and all aid into Gaza is welcome by any route,” Spokesperson Jens Laerke told reporters in Geneva. “But, it is an addition, and it doesn’t take away the fact that land crossings will be more important.”

Additional aid route

The US military’s Central Command announced that the trucks began rolling at approximately 9am, local time, on Friday, and that no troops went ashore.

The floating dock was anchored to a beach in Gaza on Thursday. With most border crossings to the enclave closed or unsafe, it will provide an additional path for aid entering the embattled enclave.

Mr. Laerke said UN agencies are finalising their readiness plans for handling the aid once the floating dock is properly functioning, keeping in mind the need to ensure the safety of staff.

“Community awareness and acceptance is paramount to ensure the safety and security of this operation,” he insisted.

He expressed gratitude to efforts by Cyprus, supported by other UN Member States, to sustain the maritime corridor as an additional route for aid into Gaza.

Open all crossings

“However, getting aid to people in need into and across Gaza cannot and should not depend on a floating dock far from where needs are most acute,” he said.

“Land routes are the most viable, effective and efficient aid delivery method, which is why we need all crossing points to be opened.”

More to follow…

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