UNSC to provide Egypt, Jordan with political cover to deliver humanitarian aid to Gaza: Sources

Merna Hesham , Thursday 12 Oct 2023

The United Nations Security Council's (UNSC) session on Friday will primarily focus on facilitating the entry of humanitarian aid into Gaza from Egypt and Jordan, informed sources in New York told Ahram Online.

Palestinians inspect the rubble of buildings hit by an Israel airstrike at Al Shati Refugee Camp Thursday, Oct. 12, 2023. AP


"The ongoing coordination between Palestine, Brazil, and the UN secretary-general to convene an official UNSC session on Friday aims primarily to provide political cover for Egypt and Jordan to facilitate the entry of aid into Gaza," the sources said.

Brazil, which holds the rotating presidency of the UNSC in October, called for a meeting of the UN body to discuss the conflict between Israel and Hamas, its Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Wednesday.

The sources said that "everyone is aware that Israel will not cease fire unless the Security Council issues a call for it," and there is a feeling within the UNSC that focusing on the humanitarian aspect at this stage "might be better."

On Thursday, Egypt issued a call to all countries and international and regional organizations willing to offer humanitarian aid to the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip to route their aid to El-Arish International Airport, a facility designated by the Egyptian authorities for receiving international humanitarian assistance.

This Egyptian initiative is in direct response to the ongoing and severe Israeli bombardment and aims to alleviate the suffering endured by the people of Gaza, a statement by Egypt's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

On Wednesday, Arab foreign ministers called on Arab states and the international community to generously contribute to addressing the deteriorating humanitarian situation.

The UN humanitarian office has reported that the Israeli bombardment of Gaza has leveled 1,000 homes since the retaliation for Hamas’ attack began on Saturday, and many in the territory face dire shortages of water, fuel, and medical supplies. 

In Gaza, the Palestinian Ministry of Health reported more than 1,200 people killed in Israel's relentless campaign of air and artillery strikes, while the UN said more than 338,000 people have been displaced.

Sources told Al-Arabiya channel on Wednesday that Egypt proposed a six-hour truce to deliver humanitarian aid to Gaza.

In response to royal directives, Jordan’s Crown Prince Foundation announced the launch of the “Relief for Our Brothers in Gaza” campaign on Wednesday, in coordination with the relevant authorities in the Jordanian government and the Jordanian Armed Forces, and in cooperation with the Jordanian Hashemite Charity Organization.

Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva took to the social media platform X (formerly known as Twitter) on Wednesday to call for urgent international action to protect both Palestinian and Israeli civilians, especially children. 

"Hamas needs to free the Israeli children who were kidnapped from their families. Israel needs to stop its bombing so Palestinian children and their mothers can leave the Gaza Strip via the Egyptian border," he stated. 

Da Silva added that "there needs to be a minimum of humanity in the insanity of war.” 

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