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UK Conducts Egypt Airlift to Deliver Lifesaving Supplies to Gaza

The UK Royal Air Force has conducted an airlift operation to Egypt to support humanitarian agencies in delivering lifesaving supplies to Gaza.

The project is a response to Israel’s siege of Gaza after the Palestinian militant group Hamas launched a surprise attack on Israel last month.

This airlift followed an initial UK flight carrying 21 tons (21,000 kilograms) of similar supplies, including water filters and wound care packs, as well as 30 million pounds ($36.6 million) of additional assistance handed over last week.

According to the UK Ministry of Defence, the latest tranche of equipment will be stationed near the Rafah border to boost the management and provision capabilities of international partners on the ground in Gaza.

Rafah is currently the only available safe passage into the damaged enclave.

Additional Support for Gaza

After the shipment, the British government is expected to conduct further flights to complete the delivery of another 30 tons (30,000 kilograms) of equipment to Gaza.

It will consist of forklift trucks, lighting towers, and belt conveyors requested by humanitarian groups such as the Egyptian Red Crescent.

Image taken at RAF Brize Norton today (31/10/2023).A second UK flight carrying equipment that will support humanitarian agencies to deliver lifesaving supplies to Gaza arrived in Egypt today. This will be followed by a number of flights to deliver 30 tonnes of vital equipment such as forklift trucks, belt conveyors and lighting towers, which have been specifically requested by UK partners in the region, including the Egyptian Red Crescent. RAF delivers another large load of essential equipment to Middle East, consignment includes · Generators · Forklift trucks · Pallet trucks, including 2 for rough terrain Fuel store · Conveyor belt loader · Vehicle service kits The equipment will be set up close to the Rafah border crossing – increasing the capacity of agencies to manage and deliver significant quantities of aid to those in Gaza. Rafah is currently the only entry point for aid into Gaza. This is the second Royal Air Force humanitarian flight from Brize Norton and follows the delivery of 21 tons of essential supplies, including wound care packs and water filters, which arrived in Egypt last week and was handed over to partner agencies working on the ground in Gaza.
A second UK flight carrying equipment that will support humanitarian agencies to deliver lifesaving supplies to Gaza arrived in Egypt. Photo: Steve Lympany/UK Ministry of Defence

“With an acute humanitarian crisis unfolding, today’s [Royal Air Force] airlift demonstrates yet again that the UK is committed to helping all suffering civilians,” UK Defence Secretary Grant Shapps stated.

“Our armed forces have rapidly deployed to get our partners on the ground what they urgently need and stand ready to continue supporting the humanitarian effort.”

Preserving Humanitarian Law

The UK continues to request respect for international humanitarian law from all parties to minimize civilian casualties and prioritize the immediate supply of food, water, medical supplies, and fuel.

In programs aiding the Palestinian city, the British government emphasized that all help is run through “rigorous oversight and multiple safeguarding” processes to prevent any form of assistance to Hamas-connected groups.

The UK is determined to drive international efforts to ensure lifesaving aid reaches the people who need it most,” UK International Development Minister Andrew Mitchell explained.

“This equipment, specifically requested by our partners on the ground, will bolster essential supplies including food and medicine to be delivered to large numbers of civilians.”

“We continue to call for the regular delivery of humanitarian supplies into Gaza and the opening of more entry points to relieve those who are suffering.”

air strikes on a hospital compound in the Gaza Strip
Aftermath of an air strikes on a hospital compound in the Gaza Strip. Photo: AFP

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