Turkey accuses US of bowing to global pressure for air drops

Turkey sees the airdrop of humanitarian aid to Gaza and a plan to deliver aid by sea as positive but not enough to solve the core issue, according to the foreign ministry spokesman on Wednesday.

NATO member Turkey has criticized Israel for its attacks on Gaza and supported efforts to try its leaders for genocide. It has called for an immediate ceasefire, provided aid, and urged the West to pressure Israel for more aid.

Earlier on Wednesday, Reuters reported that the US may ask partners to fund a private operation to send aid by sea to Gaza. Along with Jordan, they have also been dropping aid by air this month.

Foreign Ministry Spokesman Oncu Keceli stated that Turkey sent 9,000 tons of medical equipment, aid for infants, and parachutes to Jordan for air drops, but believes more is needed to help Gazans.

Turkey accuses the US of giving in to international pressure

“The US seeking a solution to the humanitarian crisis in Gaza is a result of global pressure. However, the root of the problem must be addressed,” he said.

Turkish aid shipments arrive in the Gaza Strip at Kerem Shalom crossing between Israel and southern Gaza Strip July 4, 2016. (credit: REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa)

“Sending aid by air and sea is commendable. But focusing on temporary solutions instead of the real issue is avoiding the core problem,” he said, adding that Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan conveyed this to US officials in Washington last week.

Keceli emphasized that aid via ground transport is easier, cheaper, and more efficient.

The UN has warned of imminent famine in Gaza without urgent action. A formal declaration of famine in the enclave of 2.3 million people could happen this week.