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US Pledges to Help Gaza

Updated: Mar 28

US Pledges to Help Gaza

 



An immediate ceasefire in Gaza that is tied to the release of Hamas’s hostages, could soon be reached, according to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. In an interview with Al-Hadath in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, Blinken stated “I think the gaps are narrowing, and I think an agreement is very much possible.” The U.S. has been working with Arab allies, Qatar and Egypt to put together a proposal, however, Hamas rejected the deal and has come back with other requests and demands. Negotiators are still working towards a solution. Blinken doubled down on statements made by the Biden administration, earlier this month, that Israel has “basically accepted” the six-week ceasefire.

 

Starvation has become a way of life on the Gaza Strip, with 40% of United Nations aid missions being impeded or denied by Israel over the last two months. Last week, a truck carrying aid was denied from entering the Strip as it was containing scissors, which were included in medical kits meant for children, said a U.N. Official. Medical Scissors had been added to a list, mandated by Israeli authorities, deeming the item, “dual use”, or having both civilian and military applications, said Phillippe Lazzarini, head of the UNRWA. The UN has stated that 576,000 people or a quarter of the population is on the verge of famine.

 

Biden pledged to send further aid to Gaza in the State of the Union address earlier this month. Biden stated that he would establish a temporary pier that would allow for large ships carrying food, water, and temporary shelters to reach the Palestinians. Biden reaffirmed his pledge to bring home the hostages from the Oct. 7 attack on Israel and has been working towards a cease fire. Israel will also advance over 3,400 new housing units into the West Bank settlements to final approval stages. Biden maintained in his address, that the only path forward that will guarantee that Palestinians could live with peace and dignity, is of a two-state solution.

               

A US lead coalition, including the U.K., Bahrain, Canada, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, the Seychelles and Spain, was also announced to contain the threat posed by the Iranian backed Houthis. The terrorist group that controls most of Northern Yemen, including its capital, Sanaa, and came legitimacy over the nation, have been targeting commercial, US, and coalition naval vessels operating in the Red Sea. Forty-five missile and drone attacks have been launched by the Houthis, with most being intercepted by US or coalition destroyers or landing in the water.

 

Local civilians have been killed in recent missile attacks. Earlier this month, a commercial ship was hit by a ballistic missile killing two Philippino seafarers in the Gulf of Aden. As well as another incident concerning a Liberian-owned, Barbados flagged carrier, the M/V True Confidence, leaving three members of the crew dead and four others injured. The Houthis have warned passing ships, that they will continue their attacks in the Rea Sea until “aggression stops and the siege on the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip is lifted.” Israeli Mathew Miller, a US State Department spokesperson, called the deaths “sadly inevitable” at a briefing. “The Houthis have continued to launch these reckless attacks with no regard for the well-being of innocent civilians who are transiting through the Red Sea, and now they have unfortunately and tragically killed innocent civilians,” said Miller. He stated further that the United States is committed to holding the Houthis accountable for their attacks.

 


According to US Defense Department spokesperson Maj. Pete Nguyen, no military vessels have been hit by Houthi UAVs or missiles but confirmed since October, that more than a dozen commercial ships, including several US ships, have been hit. Some countries have begun to suspend arms exports to Israel to ensure this outcome. In a statement from the Office of the Canadian Minister of foreign Affairs, the Canadian Government confirmed that it has indefinitely suspended arms exports to Israel. The statement outlined that “since January 8th, the government has not approved new arms export permits to Israel, and this will continue until we can ensure full compliance with our export regime.” The statement also clarified that the parliamentary committee is studying this matter with the approved export permits from Oct. 7 and Jan. 8. 


By Dillin Bett