Foreign presence on Gaza's coast constitutes ‘occupation': Palestinian groups

US Central Command says temporary pier anchored to Gaza's beach will be used to funnel aid into besieged enclave

16:21 - 19/05/2024 Sunday
File Photo
File Photo

Palestinian groups warned Sunday that any foreign troop presence on the coast of the Gaza Strip would be considered an “occupation force.”

The US Central Command (CENTCOM) said Friday that a temporary pier was anchored to Gaza's beach and will be used to funnel humanitarian aid into the besieged enclave.

“The US floating pier on Gaza's coast is a source of concern,” the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) said in a statement.

“We warn against its potential misuse for purposes beyond aid delivery such as displacement or bolstering the Israeli occupation's interests,” it warned.

The PFLP called for opening Gaza's crossings, including the Rafah border terminal with Egypt, “to ensure unhindered aid flow without restrictions or conditions.”

The Palestinian group reiterated its rejection of any US, Israeli or foreign presence in Gaza.

“Any force from the US, Israel or any other country on our lands will be considered a legitimate target for our forces,” it added.

The Popular Resistance Committees said the US was complicit in the Israeli onslaught on the Gaza Strip.

“The pier is an attempt to distract attention away from the siege, genocide and war of starvation staged by Israel against our people,” the group said in a statement.

“Whoever wants to provide relief to our people must first stop the war, killing and massacres and cease military and financial support for the enemy (Israel),” it added.

Israel continued its brutal offensive on Gaza despite a UN Security Council resolution demanding an immediate cease-fire.

Over 35,400 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, the vast majority being women and children, and more than 79,300 others injured since October following an attack by Hamas.

More than seven months into the Israeli war, vast swathes of Gaza lay in ruins amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water and medicine.

Israel is accused of “genocide” at the International Court of Justice, which has ordered Tel Aviv to ensure its forces do not commit acts of genocide and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

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