May 23, 2024 | Flash Brief

Hamas Terrorists Attack Kerem Shalom Aid Crossing for Fourth Time in May

May 23, 2024 | Flash Brief

Hamas Terrorists Attack Kerem Shalom Aid Crossing for Fourth Time in May

Latest Developments

Hamas terrorists targeted the Kerem Shalom aid crossing into Gaza on May 23, said Israel’s Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) agency on X. The attack marks the fourth time in May that the Iran-backed group has targeted the crossing on Gaza’s southern border with Israel – one of several entry points for humanitarian aid provided to Gaza’s residents. A multiple rocket strike on the crossing launched on May 5 resulted in the deaths of four Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers. On May 9, Hamas launched eight rockets at the crossing, lightly injuring an IDF soldier, while on May 12, two rockets fired by Hamas were intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome air defense system.

COGAT also released fresh details on the amount of aid reaching Gaza. Twenty-seven trucks carrying 371 pallets of aid arrived via the U.S.-built floating pier in Gaza on May 22-23. In addition, 281 humanitarian aid trucks crossed into Gaza from both  Kerem Shalom and the western Erez crossing on Gaza’s northern border with Israel.

Expert Analysis

“Hundreds of trucks continue to cross into Gaza daily to provide humanitarian aid to Gazans. The multiple crossings into Gaza, including the U.S.-built floating pier, help provide different alternatives to deliver aid to northern and southern Gaza. This is important as the IDF expands operations in Rafah and in northern Gaza. The aid provides for Gazan civilians even as Hamas terrorists continue to target the aid crossings.” — Seth J. Frantzman, FDD Adjunct Fellow

“Hamas attacks on locations that facilitate aid to the people of Gaza continue because international pressure has failed to prevent the terrorists from doing so. Meanwhile, Israeli military operations in the Rafah area have so far failed to stop Hamas from firing on Kerem Shalom, a crucial hub for the passage of humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip.” Joe Truzman, Senior Research Analyst at FDD’s Long War Journal

Hundreds of Truckloads of Aid Await Distribution in Gaza

Despite the steady flow of aid into Gaza from Israel and the U.S.-operated pier off Gaza’s coast, final distribution of food, medical supplies and other vital goods is hampered by inefficiencies and looting by Hamas terrorists and criminal groups.

According to COGAT on May 21, 650 truckloads of aid have yet to be distributed by international aid agencies based in Gaza. This includes the contents of 451 trucks carrying humanitarian aid that crossed into Gaza the same day. Seventy of those trucks crossed via the new Erez West crossing in northern Gaza, while the rest entered through Kerem Shalom.

Aid continues to flow into Gaza from a variety of sources, including the port of Ashdod — where aid arrives by sea and then is transported by land to Gaza crossings — as well as aid that arrives from Jordan and is then transported through Israel. The situation has been exacerbated by Egypt’s closure of the Rafah crossing, with more than 82,000 metric tons of essential supplies currently stalled, according to a senior UN aid official.

Hamas Targets Kerem Shalom Aid Crossing and Israeli City of Ashkelon,” FDD Flash Brief

Hamas Fires Rockets at Kerem Shalom Crossing Hours After Reopening,” FDD Flash Brief

Israel Reopens Kerem Shalom Gaza Crossing,” FDD Flash Brief

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Israel Israel at War