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9Th Humanitarian Aid Ship From Türkiye Arrives In Egypt Full Of Aid For Gaza

19.04.2024 22:57

Carrying 3,774 tons of humanitarian aid, special Turkish ship reaches Egypt's al Arish port after 55 hour sea voyage.

The ninth Goodness Ship, which left Türkiye with 3,774 tons of humanitarian aid supplies for the millions of needy Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, has arrived at Egypt's al-Arish Port.

After leaving from the southern Turkish port of Mersin on Tuesday, the ship, loaded with food, baby supplies, sleeping bags, and flour provided by the Turkish Red Crescent, reached al-Arish after a 55-hour sea voyage.

After spending the night offshore, the ship entered the port in the morning accompanied by a pilot captain.

The aid materials will be unloaded at the port and transported to the Rafah border crossing into Gaza by truck.

After customs procedures, the materials will be handed over to the Palestinian Red Crescent, which will then distribute the aid to those in need in Gaza.

Nearly 40,000 tons of various humanitarian aid supplies have been so far delivered to Gaza in 13 planes and eight ships in cooperation with the Turkish Red Crescent and the Disaster and Emergency Management Authority, or AFAD.

Turkish ambassador to Cairo welcomes ship

Welcoming the ship, Turkish Ambassador to Cairo Salih Mutlu Sen told reporters that cargo can be loaded and unloaded from the vessel rapidly.

Emphasizing the mass of aid carried, Sen said: "Our ninth ship that arrived here broke a record, carrying 3,774 tons of aid material. This is such a big number that when I was talking to my US, British, and German ambassador colleagues in Cairo, they did a double-take when I said 'a ship of 3,000 tons is coming here and I'll go to welcome it.' They weren't sure because what they're used to is usually 30-50 tons, which is how much an airplane can carry.

"So Türkiye is really leading the world league in terms of humanitarian aid. This stems from the generosity, charity, and benevolence of the Turkish nation, our people, and the effective and sincere mobilization of organizations such as the Turkish Red Crescent, Turkish Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) and our non-governmental organizations for the people of Gaza."

Stating that they are coordinating with the Turkish Red Crescent and AFAD, he underlined that Türkiye aims to send at least one humanitarian aid ship to Gaza every two weeks in light of the Egyptian Foreign Ministry's announcement on the number of trucks entering Gaza and the depletion of their stocks.

Egyptian authorities and the global community appreciate Türkiye's contributions, he said.

'Our hope is our aid will continue to enter in most effective, fastest way'

Since al-Arish is just 25-30 kilometers (12-18 miles) from the Rafah gate, the aid is delivered quickly, Sen said.

Stressing the importance of coordination in aid, he explained: "We're doing this in coordination with the Egyptian Red Crescent, the Foreign Ministry, security officials, all of them. It's no easy task, but our authorities have established such a good working system with their counterparts that it works very well when the purpose is pure.

"Our hope is that our aid will continue to enter in the most effective and fastest way because at the moment, the number of trucks at the Rafah gate has reached 500, which is pretty good. We hope that the number of trucks will increase a little more and that we will send aid through, that the whole world will, that they will take Türkiye as an example, that they will compete in charity."

Thanking the Egyptian Foreign Ministry, security officials, and the Egyptian Red Crescent for their cooperation, Sen underscored: "In the final analysis, the munificence, charity and generosity of the Turkish people and their commitment to Gaza, to the victimized and innocent Palestinian people and their sensitivity towards them are above all kinds of appreciation.

"At the service of our people, we are in al-Arish as a team with the Red Crescent, the Health Ministry, AFAD and the Red Crescent to fulfill their requests," he said.

'Aid delivered to those in need one by one'

Stating that the humanitarian aid and war are separate issues, Sen said Israel is, under international law, obliged to open a way for humanitarian aid materials and deliver them.

Indicating that they are following the process of delivering the aid to those in need, he said: "Here, our Red Crescent and AFAD entrust these goods to the custody of the Egyptian Red Crescent and transports them by trucks to the Rafah Border Gate.

"Security checks are carried out here by the Israeli officials. As a result of coordination, the trucks are delivered to the UNRWA (UN agency for Palestinian refugees), the Palestinian Red Crescent and the authorities on the Palestinian side. Since this place is very close and we always bring them to al-Arish, they are transferred to Gaza within one to three days, as soon as possible. There should be no doubt about this."

Stressing that Israel also stepped up security checks for the passage of aid, Sen said: "It is out of the question that incoming goods and aid will never enter Gaza. They can rest assured. Absolutely all goods and aids are entering Gaza one by one with our team and in coordination with the Egyptian Red Crescent and are being delivered to those in need. They should not worry at all."

"We can now safely say that 500 trucks are on their way to Gaza. The first batch of goods from our aid will enter Gaza within 24 hours and will be received by UNRWA, the UN, and the Palestinian Red Crescent," he added.

*Writing by Serdar Dincel from Istanbul -

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