Oxfam Canada’s Statement on Canadian Aid Airdrops in Gaza

February 29, 2024

We welcome Canada’s commitment to delivering aid to the people in Gaza facing starvation and famine. However, the Government of Israel has a legal obligation to ensure aid reaches civilians in Gaza. Indiscriminate airdrops in overpopulated areas are not only symbolic and degrading; they risk harming people, undermining the existing aid architecture, and cannot ensure that items safely reach those most in need. Prior to the current escalation, three crossings – Kerem Shalom, Rafah, and Erez – were open. For nearly five months, without legitimate justification, these crossing have been closed or severely restricted by Israeli authorities, and aid agencies have been continuously obstructed in their response.

Instead of indiscriminate airdrops in Gaza, Canada should cut the flow of weapons to Israel and insist that Israel uphold its duty to provide humanitarian aid by making crossings into Gaza and routes inside Gaza fully functional. The collective punishment of Gaza needs to stop and Canada must increase its pressure to hold the Government of Israel accountable to its legal and moral obligations.

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