Hamas claims five civilians including two young boys were killed in Gaza US aid drop after parachute carrying heavy load ‘failed to deploy’

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Written By Maya Cantina
  • Hamas claims 5 civilians were crushed to death by the multi-nation Gaza airdrop
  • The US was among six nations that sent aid parcels to the war-torn region 

Hamas claims five civilians were crushed to death by the multi-nation Gaza airdrop yesterday after a parachute carrying one of the parcels failed to deploy.

CBS cites unnamed officials from the Hamas-run Gaza Ministry of Health who say two of the victims killed were young boys. The slain civilians were reportedly killed at the Al-Shati refugee camp in northern Gaza when at least one parachute failed to properly deploy and a parcel fell on them.

There were also 11 others injured, aged between 30 and 50 years old. 

The US was among six nations that sent aid parcels to the war-torn region last Friday; Jordan, Egypt, France, the Netherlands and Belgium also sent packages. 

The State Department is yet to comment on the claims and the UN has not yet verified the report.

Parachutes drop supplies into the northern Gaza Strip, as seen from southern Israel, Friday, March 8, 2024

Three planes from Air Forces Central dropped 66 bundles containing about 38,000 meals into Gaza

Three planes from Air Forces Central dropped 66 bundles containing about 38,000 meals into Gaza

U.S. C-130s dropped over 38,000 meals along the coastline of Gaza allowing for civilian access to the critical aid

U.S. C-130s dropped over 38,000 meals along the coastline of Gaza allowing for civilian access to the critical aid

A video on social media shows the cluster of parcels suspended from parachutes before one drops much faster than the rest. 

Three planes from Air Forces Central dropped 66 bundles containing about 38,000 meals into Gaza. The bundles were dropped in southwest Gaza, on the beach along the territory’s Mediterranean coast. 

The airdrop was coordinated with the Royal Jordanian Air Force, which said it had two food airdrops Saturday in northern Gaza and has conducted several rounds in recent months. 

Three Biden administration officials said the planes dropped the military Meals Ready to Eat  — shelf-stable meals that contain a day’s worth of calories in each sealed package — in locations that were thought would provide civilians with the greatest level of safety to access aid. 

Afterward, the U.S. monitored the sites and was able to see civilians approach and distribute food among themselves, according to the officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to provide additional details that had not been made public.

The U.S. airdrop is expected to be the first of many.

The airdrops took place after Biden said the US military would build a temporary pier on Gaza’s Mediterranean coast to receive shipments of humanitarian aid. 

White House national security spokesperson John Kirby said Friday that the airdrops were being planned to deliver emergency humanitarian assistance in a safe way to people on the ground. 

Palestinians queue for hours to receive food distributed by charitable organizations, in Deir Balah, Gaza on March 01, 2024

Palestinians queue for hours to receive food distributed by charitable organizations, in Deir Balah, Gaza on March 01, 2024

Smoke rises following Israeli air strikes in the northern Gaza Strip, 01 March 2024. More than 30,200 Palestinians and over 1,300 Israelis have been killed, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF)

Smoke rises following Israeli air strikes in the northern Gaza Strip, 01 March 2024. More than 30,200 Palestinians and over 1,300 Israelis have been killed, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF)

The United States believes the airdrops will help address the dire situation in Gaza, but they are no replacement for trucks, which can transport far more aid more effectively, though Thursday’s events also showed the risks with ground transport. 

The United Nations has warned of famine among Gaza’s 2.3million residents as the war with Israel rages on. 

Since the war began on October 7, Israel has barred entry of food, water, medicine and other supplies, except for a trickle of aid entering the south from Egypt at the Rafah crossing and Israel’s Kerem Shalom crossing. 

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