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Army carries out joint airdrops of aid into war-torn Gaza

JAF says operation on Sunday the 37th it carries out alone, 40th with partners

By Raed Omari - Mar 10,2024 - Last updated at Mar 10,2024

Jordan on Sunday carries out joint airdrop of aid into Gaza in cooperation with Egypt, the US, France and Belgium (JAF photo)

AMMAN — Jordanian C-130 cargo planes airdropped aid to northern Gaza on Sunday, the 37th operation of the Jordan Armed Forces-Arab Army (JAF) has carried out to deliver assistance by air into the strip since the outbreak of the war on October 7.

Two Royal Jordanian Air Force planes, joined by four aircrafts from Egypt, the US, France and Belgium took off from King Abdullah II Airbase on Sunday heading for Gaza, where tens of thousands, especially in the isolated north, are said to be suffering long cutoffs of food supplies, putting them on verge of famine. 

JAF said the airdrops on Sunday were the 40th joint emergency humanitarian aid operation it carried out with partners, including the US, Egypt, the UAE, the UK, The Netherlands, Belgium, France, Oman, Bahrain and Qatar. 

In a statement on Sunday, JAF said the airdrops were carried out in response to the humanitarian duty and as part of the ongoing efforts of Jordan to support the steadfastness of the Palestinians and alleviate their suffering amid the Israeli war on the Gaza Strip.

JAF reiterated that it will continue sending aid to Gaza via an air bridge to supply humanitarian and medical supplies, whether by flights from Marka Airport towards Egypt's El Arish International Airport, airdrops on the Gaza Strip or land aid convoys. 

Jordan is the first country to carry out airdrops of aid over Gaza and the sole country of joint operations of air assistance to war-ravaged strip.

At the height of the Israeli war on Gaza, Jordan airdropped essential medical supplies to its two field hospitals in Gaza.

Jordan has established two pivotal field hospitals in Gaza, the first was inaugurated in 2009, in the aftermath of the Hamas-Israel conflict in 2008, and the second facility was set up in November 29 in Khan Younis, which is the second-largest city in Gaza.

On December 25, 2023, Jordanian army, under Royal directives, airdropped humanitarian aid for hundreds of Palestinians trapped inside the Church of Saint Porphyrius in the Al Zaytun neighbourhood in the northern Gaza Strip.

On February 28, His Majesty King Abdullah, the Supreme Commander JAF participated in the airdrop operations conducted by Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF) aircraft to deliver food and relief aid to Gaza.

JAF said in a statement at the time that His Majesty’s participation reaffirms Jordan’s continued solidarity with the Palestinian people by providing aid through all available means to Gaza.

Six C130 aircraft were dispatched from Amman, including three RJAF aircraft and three others from the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, and France. His Majesty was also present to check on the process of preparing the aid and equipping the aircraft before they were dispatched from King Abdullah II Airbase.

During a recent meeting with notables from the southern governorate of Maan, the King said that the idea to carry out aid airdrops into Gaza came to his mind when he flew over the strip on the way back to Amman from Germany.

The King said that meetings were held with military attaches of Arab, Islamic and Western countries, where they were asked to use the spare parachutes their countries have for airdrop of aid into Gaza.  

Only Jordanians do it

Videos of Gazans receiving with applaud Jordanian assistance airdropped by RJAF C-130s into their besieged strip have gone viral on social media.

But that video of a Palestinian boy looking over the smoky skies of Gaza when military planes were dropping aid into the strip remains the most famous one.

In that video, the Palestinian boy was videotaping planes dropping with parachutes aid packages into Gaza and telling a woman next to him, “Look at the Jordanian planes.” Asked by the woman, who was unseen in the video, “How do you know they are Jordanians?,” he said, “Only Jordanians do it. May God bless them?”



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