For the first time since Israel closed the border crossing between Egypt and Gaza two weeks ago, a trickle of desperately needed aid was allowed into the besieged Palestinian territory on Saturday.
Only 20 trucks were allowed in, which aid workers said was insufficient to address Gaza’s unprecedented humanitarian crisis.
For days, over 200 trucks carrying approximately 3,000 tons of aid have been stationed near the crossing.
Half of the 2.3 million Palestinians living in Gaza have fled their homes, and they are forced to ration food and drink tainted water.
Amid a widespread power outage, hospitals report that their stock of medical supplies and fuel for emergency generators is running low. While Palestinian militants launch rocket barrages into Israel, Israel continues to bomb Gaza, destroying entire neighborhoods in the process.
Following over a week of high-level diplomacy by multiple mediators, including trips to the region by U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and U.S. President Joe Biden, the opening took place.
Israel had maintained that until Hamas freed all the prisoners it had captured, nothing would enter Gaza, and Israeli airstrikes had closed off the Palestinian side of the crossing.
The Hamas-run government in Gaza also said the limited convoy “will not be able to change the humanitarian catastrophe,” calling for a secure corridor operating around the clock.