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Israel: Hamas, UN to blame if aid doesn’t reach civilians

"Has there been food, water, or medical supplies you have asked for us to facilitate, and we have refused? The answer is no," Israel's COGAT said.

One of 197 humanitarian aid trucks entering the Gaza Strip on Dec. 12, 2023. Source: X
One of 197 humanitarian aid trucks entering the Gaza Strip on Dec. 12, 2023. Source: X

After allowing 197 humanitarian aid trucks into the Gaza Strip on Tuesday, Israel blamed the terror group Hamas and the United Nations for not getting supplies to those in need.

“Humanitarian aid trucks wait more than an hour and a half outside the Rafah crossing, waiting for the Palestinian side in Gaza to open,” Lt. Col. Avichay Adraee, the Israel Defense Forces’ Arabic-language spokesman, tweeted on Wednesday.

“Residents of Gaza, why does aid not reach you? Hamas does not care about the residents of the Gaza Strip,” Adraee added.

On Tuesday, COGAT, the Israel Defense Ministry agency responsible for civilian affairs in the territories, also expressed its dissatisfaction with the United Nations and its agencies.

“Has there been food, water, or medical supplies you have asked for us to facilitate and we have refused? The answer is no,” COGAT tweeted.

“Blaming us won’t change the fact that the @UN just needs to do better. Whatever you can bring (and distribute), we can clear,” it added.

COGAT included an image of a tweet from UNRWA, the U.N. aid agency to Palestinians, which charged Israel earlier that day with “inflicting collective punishment on over 2 million people, half of whom are children.”

Similarly, on Monday Israel laid the blame at the feet of the United Nations for any lack of aid reaching Gazans, saying it needs to do more to facilitate the entry of aid into the Gaza Strip, posting a picture of dozens of trucks waiting on the Egyptian side of the Rafah Crossing.

“We have expanded our capabilities to conduct inspections for the aid delivered into Gaza. Kerem Shalom [Crossing] is to be opened, so the amount of inspections will double. But the aid keeps waiting at the entrance of Rafah,” COGAT tweeted.

“The U.N. must do better—the aid is there, and the people need it.”

To showcase the efforts it has been making to facilitate humanitarian aid, COGAT launched a new website unveiling the comprehensive scope of Israel’s dedicated humanitarian efforts. “We are at war with Hamas, not the people of Gaza,” tweeted the Israeli Defense Ministry agency.

Israel and the United Nations have repeatedly crossed swords over the current conflict as the United Nations and its associated agencies pour out a stream of criticism of the Jewish state. On Tuesday, the U.N. General Assembly voted overwhelmingly to demand a humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza, a move Israel says would only rescue Hamas, which butchered its citizens on Oct. 7.

Israel’s government sharply criticized U.N. chief António Guterres on Monday, with a Prime Minister’s Office spokesman telling press, “I don’t think any U.N. secretary-general in history has gone so far to secure the survival of a terrorist organization.”

U.N. agencies operating in Gaza have long been accused of corruption and most independent observers agree that UNRWA, the largest U.N. organization in the Gaza Strip, is largely staffed by Hamas loyalists.

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