The UK Government may send British Troops to deliver aid to Gaza.

The Government is reportedly considering sending British troops to Gaza to help deliver aid once the US finishes building a new sea route into the besieged territory.

The Pentagon confirmed that construction of the temporary pier, designed to speed up humanitarian aid into Gaza as famine looms, had begun, and operations will start in early May.

In a briefing with journalists, a senior US military official emphasised that no American troops would be ashore and that nationals from an unnamed “third country” would drive the trucks along the 500-metre floating causeway to a secure area on the beach.

“We have a third party who will be driving the trucks down the pier,” the official said. “Just a point of emphasis, there will be no US military boots on the ground. So, a third party is driving those trucks.”

While refusing to name which country would supply the drivers, he made clear it would be carried out by a “significant partner.”

The BBC reported that the UK is considering sending British troops to fulfil the task, but a decision has yet to be made.

Concerns over US – and now possibly UK – troops getting caught up in the conflict were heightened this week when a United Nations team touring the planned secure area for distribution was forced to duck for cover on Wednesday as mortar shells landed nearby.

About 1,000 US troops will support the military effort, including in coordination cells in Cyprus and Israel. Still, none will step onto the shore under a direct order from President Biden.

A British ship which will house hundreds of US army personnel building the jetty has set sail from Cyprus, a UK defence source reported.

The UK government should not be sending British troops into a dangerous environment. The security situation in Gaza is a mess with ongoing fighting between Hamas and the Israeli Defence Force, leaving troops in danger of being caught up in the crossfire or deliberately targeted by either side. As we have seen recently, the IDF has a history of targeting aid deliveries, though later claiming such actions were accidents. IDF troops have themselves been victims of friendly fire from their forces as well.

Gaza has become a lawless area with not just the competing Militaries armed and dangerous but criminal gangs roaming the area, hijacking aid deliveries and carrying out kidnappings. Our troops, who are already badly treated by the Government, should not be exposed to these risks; the rules of engagement that they are likely to be forced to operate under are likely to put them at a high level of risk and unable to defend themselves properly.

The death or kidnapping of UK troops opens up the prospect of our military being drawn deeper into this conflict, something we must avoid at all costs.

The UK Government must not be allowed to send our troops to do a job the US military itself is unwilling to carry out.

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