Biden administration may dismantle US-built Gaza pier again

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The Biden administration is expected to dismantle the pier it built off the coast of Gaza to deliver badly needed humanitarian aid to Palestinians, Al Arabiya English has learned.

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The final decision has not yet been made but could come as early as Friday due to expected high sea states, US officials told Al Arabiya English.

The temporary pier, which the US has said was meant to complement, not replace, land routes, was severely damaged less than two weeks after it was attached to the coastline last month.



After bad weather and high tides caused significant damage, Washington stopped using the pier to deliver aid, but it was quickly repaired and reattached.

Heavy sea states also affected four US Army vessels supporting the Gaza pier mission. Two were left stranded near the pier, and the other two were beached on the coast of Israel near Ashkelon during the initial damage.

Frustrated by the lack of Israeli cooperation to allow humanitarian aid into Gaza, US President Joe Biden ordered the construction of a temporary pier in March in what US officials said was a bid to “surge” assistance to Palestinians.

However, the aid delivered has fallen significantly short of the requirements outlined by officials and the United Nations. This has raised concerns among US lawmakers and critics, who question the project’s effectiveness and estimated cost of over $300 million in American taxpayer funds.

US troops climb a beached vessel used for delivering aid to Palestinians via a new US-built pier in Gaza, after it ran aground along with another aid vessel, May 25, 2024. (Reuters)
US troops climb a beached vessel used for delivering aid to Palestinians via a new US-built pier in Gaza, after it ran aground along with another aid vessel, May 25, 2024. (Reuters)



Airdrops of humanitarian aid were also suspended for weeks due to what US officials said were “kinetic operations” by Israeli forces across Gaza.

They briefly resumed on Sunday but have been significantly less than what was taking place before Israel’s Rafah operations, and no such airdrops have been recorded this week.

The US military said it had airdropped more than 1,050 metric tons of humanitarian assistance in addition to the aid delivered by the Joint Logistics Over the Sea (JLOTS) corridor, also known as the Gaza pier.

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