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Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Israel ‘studying’ logistical change to entry of Qatari aid in Gaza


Israel bombed Qatar’s Red Crescent [QRCS] headquarters in Gaza on May 17th during an 11-day bombardment on the besieged city.

Israeli authorities are reportedly studying the possibility of changing logistics for the entry of Qatari aid into Gaza while postponing the return of Ambassador Muhammad Al-Emadi, Al Jazeera reported on Monday, citing Tel Aviv’s official radio.

The Israeli radio failed to disclose details on why there would be a change, which comes days following after a Qatar and Egypt-Brokered ceasefire.

Doha’s envoy to Gaza was also scheduled to return following the truce this week, though he has yet to do so.

Millions of Palestinians across the Gaza Strip are heavily reliant on aid from Qatar, which has for years provided immediate assistance to families in need through the disbursing of salaries to those affected by the Israeli occupation.

Earlier this week, Israeli mobs were reported to be posing as the Qatari Gaza Reconstruction Committee, calling Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip to request personal information and addresses in exchange for urgent relief aid and cash assistance worth $100.

The committee denied those calls, saying only official government agencies, headed by the Ministry of Social Development and the Ministry of Public Works and Housing, are authorised to contact Palestinians for the purpose of mobilising aid.

Read also: Israel conducts mass arrests of Palestinians

Similar alerts were issued by the Gaza Interior Ministry Spokesperson Iyad Al-Bozm who warned Palestinians of suspicious calls and messages by Israeli attempting to collect intel by targeting people in the enclave.

The warning statement was issued amid a recent Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip that prompted global action to assist Palestinians facing aggression. However, reports on the ground revealed how Israeli-affiliated mobs used this as an opportunity to track down citizens.

Continuing to provide aid

Qatar’s relief efforts in Gaza were significantly affected by the 11-day bombardment, with several aid buildings and hospitals levelled by targeted Israeli attacks.

The headquarters of the QRCS in the Gaza Strip was bombed by Israeli occupation forces on May 17th, killing two Palestinians and wounding 10 others. Qatar expressed its strong condemnation of the “barbaric” attack.

The Sheikh Hamad Hospital for Rehabilitation and Artificial Limbs in Gaza, funded by the Qatar Fund for Development [QFFD] also suffered from significant damage, affecting its ability to treat patients.

But despite the attacks, QRCS has vowed to continue its humanitarian projects in Palestine, launching a QAR 60 million fundraising campaign for Palestine under the title ‘We Are All Palestine’. The campaign aims to benefit more than 593,000 Palestinians in Gaza, Jerusalem and several cities in the West Bank.

“A set of projects will be executed in the fields of health care, food and nonfood items, ambulance and emergency services, and furnishing of hospitals,” said QRCS in a statement.

“Under a $1 million donation, QRCS provided 600 food parcels for the benefit of 4,000 persons, offered psychological support services, and trained 60 physicians and nurses to enhance their emergency assessment skills,” the statement added.

The Gaza ceasefire came into effect on Friday following Qatar and Egypt mediation efforts to stop the attacks, the deadliest since 2014, in which Israel killed 248 Palestinians including 66 children.

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