Biden announces US military airdrop of aid to Gaza

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden announced Friday that the U.S. military plans to airdrop food and supplies into Gaza in the coming days, highlighting the effort after the deaths of Palestinians queuing for aid underscored the humanitarian crisis in the densely populated coastal area.

Other nations, including Jordan and France, have already conducted aid airdrops into Gaza. “We need to do more and the United States will do more,” Biden said during a press briefing, noting the current level of aid to Gaza is insufficient.

White House spokesperson John Kirby emphasized that the airdrops would mark the beginning of a “sustained effort,” with the initial drop likely consisting of military Meals Ready-to-Eat (MREs). “This isn’t going to be one and done,” Kirby stated.

Additionally, Biden mentioned the U.S. is exploring the possibility of establishing a maritime corridor to facilitate the delivery of larger quantities of aid to Gaza. Officials indicated that the airdrops might start as early as this weekend.

According to the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, approximately 576,000 people in the Gaza Strip, or one-quarter of the population, are on the brink of famine.