Moti Kahana, an American-Israeli businessman and founder of the NGO Amaliah, said “Israel finally agreed to allow in three types of aid: medical, educational and food”.
Kahana, a philanthropist who is using his own money to fund the NGO, explained that no Amaliah employee would cross into Syria, and that the aid is being transferred into Syria by having the supplies placed inside a “safe zone” in the Syrian town of town of Quneitra on the Israel border.
The supplies include medical equipment so that Syrians can construct a field hospital and treat their wounded inside the country. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) is securing the transfer of the supplies.
Kahana states that the IDF “knows whom to trust” and that aid will not end up in the hands of Islamist groups that have taken over bordering towns and villages. The goal the NGO is to help displaced people who are in urgent need of medical supplies, without having to leave Syria. He underlined: “[we call on the] world to join us. What we are doing by creating this safe zone is preventing the departure of more refugees”.
One of the first objectives of the NGO is to build a field hospital, where educational supplies will help prevent the radicalisation of children by Islamist groups.
Israel’s Deputy Regional Cooperation Minister Ayoub Kara, a Druze Arab from the Likud Party, told The Jerusalem Post, “I fully support sending humanitarian aid to the Quneitra area… civilians are in a difficult situation and we want to help them and not wait for others He elaborated that Israel is closely observing events in Syria: “Islamic State is today in retreat and the FSA is there as well as Nusra Front fighters. We don’t want radicals to arrive to our border”.
While taking an officially neutral stance in the conflict, Israel has treated thousands of wounded Syrians who have sought help at the Israeli border since 2013.