Gaza Aid Ship Arrives in Egypt

Aid Will Be Turned Over to Red Crescent for Delivery to Gaza Strip

The aid ship Amalthea, chartered by a Libyan humanitarian group, has reportedly docked at the Egyptian port of El-Arish after receiving permission from the Egyptian government to seek refuge there.

Egypt’s government says that the ship will be permitted to transfer its cargo, several tons of food and medical aid, to the Red Crescent, which will transfer the goods to the Gaza Strip.

The ship had originally hoped to deliver the goods to the Gaza Strip directly, but was forced to change its plans after being threatened with a military attack by the Israeli Navy. Israel had vowed to use any means necessary to prevent the aid group from delivering the goods by sea, but it does not appear they will block the transmission of goods through Egypt’s Rafah border crossing.

Remaining to be seen, however, is how long Egypt will delay the goods before their final delivery. Egypt has been cooperating with the Israeli blockade for years, and though they have relaxed some border restrictions recently they still are severely limited goods from entering across the border. Considering, however, that only a small fraction of the cargo of the Mavi Marmara, a Turkish aid ship attacked by the Israeli military, has been allowed in nearly two months later, the delivery by way of Egypt is likely the best hope for the goods to actually reach the Gazans.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.