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German government ramps up humanitarian aid for Gaza by €20 million

The German government is increasing humanitarian aid for the people in the sealed-off Gaza Strip, which have been under relentless Israeli bombardment for months, by another €20 million ($21.6 million), Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said Thursday.

However, this was by far not enough to meet the needs of Gazans, Germany’s top diplomant stressed.

The number of lorries bringing life-saving food, medicine and other aid supplies to Gaza has fallen sharply in recent weeks, Baerbock added. “This is unacceptable. The Israeli government must immediately allow safe and unhindered access for humanitarian aid.”

According to the German Foreign Office, Berlin provided a total of €206.5 million to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East(UNRWA) in the last financial year. Of that sum, €83 million had benefitted people in Gaza.

The UNRWA has come under criticism in recent weeks after Israeli accusations that some of its workers were involved in the October 7 attacks on Israel.

A total of 16 countries, including Germany, had initially put payments to UNRWA on hold following the revelations.

Baerbock went on to say that following the collapse of law and order in large parts of the Gaza Strip, the Israeli army must ensure that humanitarian aid can be distributed successfully.

If not enough lorries could get through, aid would have to be delivered to the people by air if necessary, she said. “Together with our partners, especially Jordan, we also want to participate in airdrops of humanitarian aid.”

At the same time, a humanitarian ceasefire is now needed more urgently than ever before “so that the hostages can finally be released from the hands of Hamas and more humanitarian aid can reach the people.”

The latest Gaza war was triggered by the unprecedented massacre carried out by Palestinian extremist organization Hamas and other militant groups in southern Israel on October 7. They killed some 1,200 people, most of them civilians, and abducted about 250 to Gaza.

More than 100 Israelis are still said to be held there.

Meanwhile, more than 30,000 Palestinians have been killed in Israel’s retaliatory military assault on the sealed-off coastal area, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.


dwnews

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