Photo by Admin on 28 January, 2024

Israeli Protesters Try to Block Gaza Aid for Fifth Straight Day

Public By TPS • 28 January, 2024

Jerusalem, 28 January, 2024 (TPS) -- Israeli protesters on Sunday converged on the Kerem Shalom border crossing for the fifth consecutive day in a bid to prevent aid from passing into the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

Sefi Ben Haim, organizer of the Order 9 movement, which has been organizing the protests, told the Tazpit Press Service, “Our goal is to prevent aid to the enemy in times of war. The people of Israel are here with us in all its shades. We have 136 hostages and fighters operating in Gaza. The flour is food for the terrorists who will have the strength to fight our soldiers. Fuel will allow them electricity in their tunnels. All these are means to help them fight against us.”

For five straight days, protesters from Order 9 have demonstrated at the crossing, bypassing police checkpoints set up to prevent their arrival.

The movement’s name is a reference to the Order 8 emergency notice that army reservists receive for mobilization outside the framework of regular reserve duty. Since Hamas’s October 7 massacres in communities near the Gaza border, around 360,000 reserve soldiers have been mobilized.

On Wednesday, the demonstrators reportedly blocked over 100 trucks, some of which were diverted to another crossing between Egypt and Gaza.

The demonstrators include families of the 136 hostages still being held by Hamas, relatives of soldiers killed in action in Gaza, reservists rotated out of combat and civilians evacuated from the northern and southern frontiers.

On Dec. 15, Israel’s Security Cabinet approved the opening of the Kerem Shalom crossing for the transfer of aid into the Strip following intense U.S. and international pressure. All the Israeli crossings to Gaza had been shuttered after the Oct. 7 massacre, with only Egypt’s Rafah crossing from Sinai remaining open.

The latest protests followed previous attempts to block the passage of aid to Gaza from Israel, including on Jan. 9 and Dec. 21. Organizers of the Dec. 21 effort said it was mounted to stop “Hamas trucks” and “Nazi trucks” from entering the coastal enclave.

Hamas is believed to be stealing much of the aid intended for Gazan civilians and redirecting it to terrorists hiding in tunnels.

The Israeli Defense Ministry’s Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) said that 260 aid trucks entered Gaza last Sunday, including 139 passing through Kerem Shalom, the most on any single day since the war began on Oct. 7.

At least 1,200 people were killed in Hamas’s attacks on Israeli communities near the Gaza border on Oct. 7. The number of men, women, children and soldiers held captive in Gaza by Hamas is believed to be 136.