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Obituaries, breaking news, news from Gaza and more

Obituaries, breaking news, news from Gaza and more

The Turkish president says cutting off vital supplies to Gaza is a “violation of the most basic human rights.”

Turkish President and AKP leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks during his party’s group meeting at the Turkish Grand National Assembly in Ankara, Turkey, on October 11, 2023. (Photo by ADEM ALTAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced on Friday that cutting off electricity, water, fuel and food supplies to two million people in Gaza is a “violation of the most basic human rights.”

“Collective punishment of the people of Gaza will only exacerbate the problem and increase pain, tension and tears,” Erdogan said during an economic forum in Istanbul. “Cutting off electricity, water, fuel and food to two million people confined to an area of ​​360 square kilometers (about 140 square miles) is a violation of the most basic human rights.”

The Turkish President reported that a humanitarian aid plane landed this morning at Egypt’s Al-Arish International Airport carrying medicines, durable foods, canned food, diapers, and medical supplies for the region.

Erdogan called on the Israeli government to allow aid to be delivered through the Rafah border crossing between Egypt and Gaza.

Some background: Israel and Egypt have imposed a strict blockade on Gaza since Hamas took control of the Strip in 2007. Israel strictly controls the flow of goods and people to and from Gaza, and imposes an air and sea blockade of the Strip.

Human Rights Watch has described Gaza as an “open-air prison.” More than half of its population lives in poverty and suffers from food insecurity, and nearly 80% of them depend on humanitarian aid.

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This week Israel took further drastic measures, cutting off access to food, fuel, water and electricity, in what it described as a “total blockade”, in response to last week’s devastating Hamas attack.