Food aid convoy for 150,000 people enters Gaza

A United Nations World Food Programme convoy carrying food for 150,000 people has entered Gaza for the first time since 2007, it has been announced.

The aid reached the Rafah crossing from Egypt after a seven-hour drive from Alexandria, the organisation said.

An open-ended ceasefire between Israel and Hamas has so far held, with both sides claiming victory after the seven-week conflict.

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Palestinian children 'celebrate victory over Israel'

Palestinian children holding heavy weapons filled the streets of Gaza to "celebrate victory over Israel" on the third day of the latest ceasefire.

A truce, which took effect on Tuesday evening, ended seven weeks of fighting that has killed more than following more than 2,000 Palestinians and 70 Israelis.

Palestinian boys, sitting on the shoulders of Islamic Jihad militants, hold weapons during a rally celebrating 'victory'. Credit: Reuters
A Palestinian girl wearing a headband pictured during a rally in Gaza. Credit: Reuters

UN: 'Humanitarian assistance will continue in Gaza'

The UN has tweeted that they will continue to provide humanitarian assistance to the people of Gaza following the end of the recent conflict between the Israeli military and Hamas.


Three months of Gaza food aid 'costs £42 million'

Around £42 million is required for the World Food Programme to continue food assistance to Palestinians for the next three months, the organisation said.

They said: "To continue its food assistance programmes in Palestine, WFP requires approximately US$70 million (£42 million) for its humanitarian response in Gaza for a period of three months."

Since the beginning of the latest conflict, they added that they had provided daily emergency food rations to up to 350,000 displaced people in Gaza, while reaching more than 120,000 people with emergency vouchers.

As a convoy carrying food for 150,000 people entered Gaza for the first time since 2007 today.

Food convoy for 150,000 people reaches Gaza

A convoy carrying food for 150,000 people has entered Gaza for the first time since 2007, the World Food Programme has announced.

The aid reached the Rafah crossing from Egypt after a seven-hour drive from Alexandria, the organisation said. The convoy of 8 trucks was carrying 15,600 food parcels.

“The opening of the Rafah crossing for humanitarian aid provides a major opportunity to scale up aid delivery to Gaza and needs to be sustained,” WFP Country Director Pablo Recalde said.

British Muslim and Jewish leaders unite over Gaza

Palestinians in Gaza celebrate after the ceasefire was announced. Credit: Khatib Abed Rahim/ABACA

Muslim and Jewish leaders in the UK have issued an unprecedented joint statement, calling on both faiths to "export peace" to Gaza.

The Muslim Council of Britain and the Board of Deputies of British Jews made the joint call an open-ended truce was agreed in the Middle East.

Both Israel and Hamas have claimed victory following the recent conflict, which is thought to have claimed the lives of 2,143 Palestinians and 70 Israelis.

The MCB and the BoD said they condemned the civilian casualties and hoped for "lasting peace", while also stating Muslims and Jews should "get to know one another".

The death of every civilian is a tragedy, and every effort should be taken to minimise such losses. The targeting of civilians is completely unacceptable and against our religious traditions. We pray for a speedy end to the current conflict and for a lasting peace for all.

– Muslim Council of Britain and Board of Deputies of British Jews


Gaza residents celebrate into night after ceasefire

Residents of Gaza have continued to fill the streets to celebrate the announcement of an open-ended ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.

Residents wave flags on the streets of Gaza City. Credit: APTN

Hamas fighters are said to have viewed the ceasefire as a victory, though in truth there appears to be no clear victor from the seven-week conflict, in which 2,139 Palestinians are thought to have been killed.

Children offer peace signs to cameras. Credit: APTN

Palestinian and Egyptian officials said the deal, which was mediated in Cairo and took effect from Tuesday evening, called for an indefinite halt to hostilities, the immediate opening of Gaza's blockaded crossings with Israel and Egypt and a widening of the territory's fishing zone in the Mediterranean.

End of Gaza conflict leaves a heavy human toll

Seven weeks of conflict between Israel and Hamas came to a halt today as both sides agreed to an open-ended ceasefire.

The truce was cautiously welcomes by the US, and the UN chief Ban Ki-Moon who warned than any violation of its conditions would be "utterly irresponsible".

The agreement will bring much-needed aid and construction supplies to the Gaza Strip, as well as the promise of further talks in Egypt within the next month.

ITV News' International Affairs Editor Rageh Omaar reports:

Former PM Tony Blair welcomes Gaza ceasefire

Former prime minister Tony Blair has welcomed the announcement of an open-ended ceasefire in Gaza.

The Middle East peace envoy congratulated the Egyptian government on its successful negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian factions.

The Quartet will now concentrate on a long-term plan for Gaza and for its reconstruction, including the effective and efficient reopening and reconnection to the outside world under the authority of the Palestinian authority government.

Such a plan will enable a proper and decent life for the people of Gaza, as well as protect the security of the people of Israel.

It is only tragic that such a ceasefire has come too late to save the lives of so many innocent people.

– tony blair, middle east peace envoy
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