The latest batch of Qatari aid to Gaza comes as Hamas and Israel marked the third day of the Qatar-mediated four-day truce.
Qatar’s Minister of State for International Cooperation at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Lolwah Al Khater, arrived in Gaza on Sunday marking the first high-ranking Arab official to enter the besieged Palestinian enclave since the start of the Israeli assault.
In a statement on Sunday, Qatar’s foreign ministry said the delegation aimed to oversee the delivery of Qatari aid to Gaza’s 2.3 million people.
“[Al Khater] observed the flow of Qatari humanitarian assistance through the Rafah crossing to the Gaza Strip during the current humanitarian pause between the Palestinian and Israeli sides,” the statement said.
A four-day Qatar-mediated truce between Hamas and Israel came into effect on Friday morning. As part of the deal, 50 Israeli captives held by Hamas in Gaza will be released in exchange for 150 Palestinian prisoners in Israel.
The truce also stipulated the entry of additional aid into the Strip, including fuel shipments.
Also on Sunday, Qatar dispatched five humanitarian aid flights to Egypt’s Al Arish International Airport carrying 144 tonnes of vital humanitarian aid for Gaza. Since the start of the war, Qatar has dispatched a total of 21 aid flights, carrying a total of 723 tonnes of aid.
Qatar’s foreign ministry said the aid shipment also included 1,000 tents and food supplies.
On Saturday, Qatar sent six ambulances provided by its Ministry of Public Health and the Qatar Fund For Development (QFFD).
“The aid comes within the framework of the State of Qatar’s support for the Palestinian people amid these difficult humanitarian conditions,” the statement added, noting that aid entered the northern areas of Gaza for the first time.
Speaking to Al Jazeera Arabic from Gaza on Sunday, Al Khater explained that the aid delivery has faced “logistical difficulties.”
“Qatar is ready to provide a greater amount of aid, but due to logistical obstacles and limits set on the amount of aid allowed to enter each day, there is no point in sending quantities of aid that will be left to pile up – especially if it is medical aid,” she said in a live broadcast.
The top Qatari official also met veteran Al Jazeera journalist Wael Al Dahdouh and his family, offering her condolences to them after the killing of several family members in Israel’s bombardment of the Strip on October 25.
Dahdouh’s wife, son, daughter, and infant grandson were killed in an Israeli strike that targeted a home the family was temporarily using as a shelter in southern Gaza. Israel had announced the south to be a safe zone before the deadly strike.
The incident has been widely slammed as an attempt to silence Al Jazeera over its in-depth coverage of Israeli crimes in Gaza.
The IOF killed at least 50 Palestinian and three Lebanese journalists since the start of the Israeli war on Gaza on October 7, according to the latest figures by the Committee to Protect Journalists.
Overall, the IOF has killed at least 20,031 Palestinians, including 8,176 children, since the start of the genocide on Gaza, according to figures by Euro-Med.
In a video on X, Al Khater expressed her solidarity with the people of Gaza before leaving the coastal enclave.
“I tell you that we, and all the free people of the world, are with you. Humanity stands with you, and justice is with you. So don’t be discouraged or despair, as you will prevail, God willing,” she said. “May God protect Gaza and Palestine.”
On Thursday, Al Khater welcomed 20 Palestinians holding Qatari residency upon their arrival from Gaza. Their transfer to Doha was part of a wider evacuation effort by Qatar of its residents in the Strip.
Al Khater was at the forefront of a mass evacuation effort from Afghanistan when the Taliban took over Kabul in 2021. Doha evacuated at least 80,000 Afghans and foreigners at the time.