Israeli protesters block aid trucks from entering Gaza

January 24, 2024 by Pesach Benson
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Hundreds of demonstrators prevented humanitarian aid trucks from entering the Gaza Strip from Israel at the Kerem Shalom border crossing on Wednesday.

Dozens of Israelis, including relatives of hostages being held in Gaza, and soldiers fighting in the Strip try to block trucks delivering humanitarian aid to Gaza at the Kerem Shalom crossing on Jan. 24, 2024. Photo by Tsuriya Zeevi/TPS

The protesters from the “Order 9” movement demanded that “no aid goes through until the last of the abductees returns, no equipment be transferred to the enemy.”

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.

The demonstrators include relatives of soldiers killed in action in the Gaza Strip and representatives of the families of the hostages held by Hamas terrorists in Gaza. Reservists released from Gaza combat and civilians evacuated from the northern and southern frontiers also participated.

The protesters said they bypassed police checkpoints to cross fields in the area near the Egyptian and Gaza borders “and are actually stopping the truck convoys for Hamas.”

Traffic officials said that dozens of trucks turned around and drove away from Kerem Shalom due to the protest.

On Dec. 15, Israel’s Security Cabinet approved the opening of the Kerem Shalom crossing for the transfer of aid into the Strip after 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.

Wednesday’s protest 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 was mounted to stop “Hamas trucks” and “Nazi trucks” from entering the coastal enclave ruled by the Hamas terrorist group responsible for the Oct. 7 murder of 1,200 persons in Israel.

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

The Israeli Defence Ministry’s Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) unit said that Sunday saw 260 aid trucks enter Gaza, 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, soldiers and foreigners held captive in Gaza by Hamas is now believed to be 136. Other people remain unaccounted for as Israeli authorities continue to identify bodies and search for human remains.

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