update deskIsrael at War

US: Gaza aid has greatly increased in recent days

White House national security spokesman John Kirby said that the higher delivery numbers must be sustained.

Armed and masked Palestinians seen on trucks loaded with international humanitarian aid entering Gaza through the Israeli Kerem Shalom Crossing, in the southern Gaza Strip, April 3, 2024. Photo by Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90.
Armed and masked Palestinians seen on trucks loaded with international humanitarian aid entering Gaza through the Israeli Kerem Shalom Crossing, in the southern Gaza Strip, April 3, 2024. Photo by Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90.

The United States has confirmed a substantial increase in humanitarian aid entering the Gaza Strip over the past few days.

“The aid has increased and quite dramatically in just the last few days,” White House national security spokesman John Kirby said in an interview with MSNBC on Monday.

“That’s important but it has to be sustained,” he added.

Israel has recently ramped up efforts at getting aid deliveries into the coastal enclave, with the opening of a new land crossing to the Gaza Strip designed primarily to facilitate the entry of foreign aid.

The new crossing, between the Israeli village of Zikim and the Palestinian village of As-Siafa, will reduce travel time for trucks to enter Gaza after picking up shipments at the Port of Ashdod some 25 miles away, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said last week. The goal, according to Gallant, is to reach at least 500 trucks a day entering the Strip.

COGAT, the Israel Defense Ministry unit handling aid to Gaza, announced earlier on Monday that a food aid convoy entered the Gaza Strip on Sunday night via the new northern crossing and that 102 food aid trucks in total entered the territory.

Kirby confirmed during the MSNBC interview that around 100 aid trucks entered Gaza in the past 24 hours, saying that over 2,000 trucks have been able to enter.

“We will continue expanding our efforts to facilitate humanitarian aid into and across Gaza,” COGAT tweeted.

COGAT said last week that “Israel is surging aid into Gaza” with more than 1,200 trucks entering the Strip from Sunday to Tuesday, an average of 400 a day.

The new crossing will help expedite deliveries from overseas, but also from neighboring Jordan.

“These breakthroughs have a direct impact on the flow of aid—we plan to flood Gaza with aid,” Gallant said. “It will also streamline security checks and strengthen our work with international partners.”

IDF builds tank bridges in Gaza

Israeli forces have built two tank bridges across Wadi Gaza, which separates the northern and southern sections of the Strip, the IDF said on Sunday.

Troops from Israel’s 401st Armored Brigade are using the bridges, which enable forces to attack Hamas terror targets to the south.

Additionally, Israeli forces destroyed several rocket launchers near the Nuseirat refugee camp in central Gaza which were ready for launch, and killed several Hamas gunmen in the camp.

The IDF on Monday provided an update on the ongoing operations in central Gaza, saying that the targeted raids to kill terrorists and destroy infrastructure were ongoing.

In addition to eliminating terrorists, Israeli forces destroyed several buildings belonging to Hamas and Islamic Jihad and located terrorist infrastructure, weapons, equipment and rocket launchers.

Troops are also active in the Netzer Corridor, the axis separating the north and south of the Strip, conducting targeted raids. Over the past 24 hours, Israeli forces eliminated 15 terrorists in the sector.

IDF calls up two reservist brigades

The IDF said on Sunday that two reservist brigades will enter Gaza, following the recent exit of all ground forces from the southern Strip after completing operations in Khan Yunis, leaving only one brigade remaining in the coastal enclave.

“Their call-up will allow the continuation of the effort and readiness to defend the State of Israel and maintain the security of the residents,” the IDF said.

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