More than 4,100 metric tons of aid delivered via Gaza pier since May 17: Pentagon

'We have not established an end date for this mission as of now contrary to some press reporting on the matter,' spokesman says

09:45 - 21/06/2024 vendredi
File photo
File photo

More than 4,100 metric tons (4,519 US tons) of humanitarian aid have been delivered via a floating pier off the coast of the Gaza Strip since becoming operational May 17, the Pentagon said Thursday.

"Overnight, the transfer of humanitarian assistance from Cyprus to Gaza resumed with more than 656 metric tons or 1.4 million pounds being delivered to the marshaling yard in Gaza today.

"Since May 17, when the temporary pier first went operational, over 4,100 metric tons or 9.1 million pounds have been delivered through the maritime corridor for onward delivery by humanitarian organizations," Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder told reporters.

Ryder confirmed that US Central Command personnel reanchored and reestablished the temporary pier to the Gaza beach Wednesday after it was removed last week and towed to Ashdod in Israel because of expected high seas.

He reiterated that there were "no US boots on the ground" during the reestablishment of the pier.

Stressing that the pier is a temporary solution to meet the urgent needs of the Palestinians, Ryder rejected claims that the pier could be dismantled as early as next month.

"We have not established an end date for this mission as of now contrary to some press reporting on the matter. Therefore, will continue to facilitate the transfer of humanitarian aid via the maritime corridor," he added.

US President Joe Biden ordered the establishment of a sea route to deliver food and aid to Palestinians on March 8 amid Israeli restrictions and months of conflict in the enclave.

The JLOTS -- the floating pier and the Trident pier -- became operational May 17 when trucks carrying humanitarian assistance began moving ashore via the pier.

The initial cost of the pier was estimated at $320 million. But the Pentagon said the price had dropped to $230 million due to contributions from the UK and because the cost of contracting trucks and other equipment was "lower than expected."

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