War in the Middle East The UN confirms the entry of the first 20 trucks into Gaza with food, water and medicine

The United Nations humanitarian agency, OCHA, has confirmed that 20 trucks with food, water and medicine entered the Gaza Strip this morning, controlled by the Islamist group Hamas, through the Rafah crossing, bordering Egypt

War in the Middle East The UN confirms the entry of the first 20 trucks into Gaza with food, water and medicine

The United Nations humanitarian agency, OCHA, has confirmed that 20 trucks with food, water and medicine entered the Gaza Strip this morning, controlled by the Islamist group Hamas, through the Rafah crossing, bordering Egypt.

The UN chief coordinator for humanitarian aid, Martin Griffiths, who is in Cairo, explained in a statement that "this shipment comes after days of deep and intense negotiations with all parties" to ensure that aid operations in Gaza are resumed "under the right conditions."

This humanitarian aid can only be distributed in the south of the Palestinian enclave and in no case the north, according to a source from the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA), which will be in charge of delivering the assistance to the hospitals in the south of the Strip, where the Islamist group Hamas rules.

The first convoy includes vital supplies organized by the Egyptian Red Crescent (part of the international Red Cross societies) and by the United Nations itself, which will deliver the aid to the Palestine Red Crescent. "I am confident that this shipment is the beginning of a sustained effort to provide essential supplies, including food, water, medicine and fuel, to the people of Gaza," Griffiths said.

According to Egyptian media, the food and medical aid delivered does not include fuel, vital for the Palestinian territory where some 2.4 million inhabitants live. The gate of the Rafah terminal, on the Egyptian side, was closed after the convoy passed, witnesses told the AFP agency, while dozens of people with dual nationality waited on the Palestinian side to be authorized to arrive in Egypt.

Faced with the possibility of allowing international departures, some 400 people of different nationalities, including Gazans with foreign passports, are gathering near the Rafah crossing waiting for it to be opened for the exit of people.

Several hundred foreigners, most of them Palestinians with American passports, have arrived at the pass since early in the morning, according to EFE, after it was opened to the entry of humanitarian aid. However, neither Egypt nor COGAT - the Israeli military organization responsible for the civil administration of the occupied Palestinian territories - have reported on the possible departure of people.

The only information in this regard that has circulated has been a message on the social network "If the border opens, we do not know how long it will remain open for foreigners to leave the Gaza Strip," the US embassy said. No other embassy has provided information about the departure of its nationals after 15 days of war.

"It is impossible to be here and not be heartbroken. There are two million people without water, food, medicine and fuel. On this side, we have trucks and everything necessary for them. They are not just trucks, but what separates the life from death," UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres declared on Friday. He pledged to do everything possible to get as much aid as possible as soon as possible and reiterated his call for a humanitarian ceasefire.

As Israel intensifies its largest air offensive in recent decades in the face of the extensive ground incursion into the Gaza Strip, fears grow that the war against the fundamentalist group Hamas will expand to pro-Iran militias in Lebanon, Syria or Yemen, after of the Houthis firing missiles and drones that were intercepted by the United States in the Red Sea.

The war that began on October 7 with the attack by the jihadist group that this Friday freed two Americans - a mother (59) and her daughter (18) - of the 203 kidnapped to date, has moved beyond Israeli territory and Palestinian to consolidate two axes. On the one hand, Israel, the United States and some Western allies and, on the other, Iran, Syria, Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah and perhaps the Houthis.

On a visit to a base in northern Israel, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant condemned the attacks by the Shiite group Hezbollah from southern Lebanon and announced for the first time: "Hezbollah decided to intervene in the fighting and is paying a high price". Gallant is referring to the military reprisals that have hit bases and positions of the pro-Iran group along the border.

The intensity of the airstrikes brings the start of the Israeli ground offensive closer. One of the objectives of the fighters and drones, beyond hitting everything that is linked to Hamas, is to "prepare" the terrain to facilitate the passage of their armored vehicles and tanks, so that they can move without being surprised by mines or militiamen. to come out of the numerous tunnels dug by the group's armed wing, especially in Gaza City.

The Hamas Health Ministry indicates that Israeli bombings have caused more than 4,100 deaths and 13,000 injuries in the last two weeks. While Palestinians denounce attacks against residential buildings and civilian targets as a "war crime", the army on Friday listed attacks against more than a hundred Hamas targets in the last day. Whether it be launchers and projectile commands against Israel or, for example, "arsenal in a mosque in Jabalia that terrorists used as an observation post and base of operations."

Several Arab countries and the UN asked the Israeli Government for a truce and the supply of fuel to Gaza, under a tight blockade since the Hamas terrorist attack that left 1,400 dead, 200 kidnapped and a hundred missing. Their demand clashes with voices in Israel who oppose any aid to an entity controlled by Hamas and which holds hostages, including dozens of children and the elderly.

If before 7-O many Israelis asked to differentiate between the Islamist regime and the Gazan population, today there are fewer of them due to the scenes and testimonies of Black Saturday or the fact that the Gazans took advantage of the holes that Hamas made in the border to enter, killing and looting on kibbutzim.

"I have no sympathy for the civilians of Gaza. They support their fundamentalist regime and hate the Jews. We allowed them to work in Israel and many of them gave information for the massacre of families," says Nataly, a woman in a supermarket at the entrance. from Ashkelon when I asked him about the massive bombings and images of destruction in Gaza.

At the Israeli war emergency cabinet meeting last Wednesday, US President Joe Biden showed his full support for the military campaign, but asked about the day after. In this regard, the Minister of Defense, Yoav Gallant, explained the three stages of the plan ("it will not take weeks or a single month") that not long ago was well forgotten in some drawer of his ministry: "Eliminate and destroy military capabilities and Hamas governments, to no longer have responsibility for Gaza and to create a new security reality.

"Hamas thought that October 7 would be the symbolic date of its victory over Israel, but it will be the date on which the process by which it will disappear from the face of the earth begins," Gallant added, maintaining rhetoric that raises expectations. among their fellow citizens who, whether from the right, center and left, demand an end to Hamas as a power and armed group in Gaza. Gallant's forecast is that it could be accompanied by attacks from other fronts to help Hamas against the common enemy.

After daily attacks from Lebanon (missiles or infiltrations) were met with artillery and bombing, Israel woke up on Friday to a new threat from Yemen. After the USS Carney neutralized several missiles and drones fired by the Houthis, senior Washington officials said: "We cannot say with certainty what these missiles and drones were aimed at, but they were launched from Yemen, heading north along the Red Sea, potentially toward targets in Israel."

Farther from Yemen, in the West Bank, the situation is increasingly unstable and violent. Since the Hamas attack, Israel has detained nearly 400 militants in raids that mostly ended in riots and armed clashes. In the last two weeks, some 80 Palestinians and one soldier have been killed in the West Bank.

The most serious attack in Israel's history closed, if perhaps only temporarily, its deep division of recent years, but opened the possibility of a war on several fronts.