News | Sunday, 18 January 2009

Palestinian woman leaves for Gaza mission today

MaltaToday follows aid cargo to Rafah

Sanaa el-Nahhal, the Palestinian woman from Gaza who single-handedly collected humanitarian aid from the public last week, will leave Malta today for Rafah with a truck-load of donations.
Ms el-Nahhal, who has been living in Malta with her family for more than 20 years, will travel to Cairo, Egypt, today in the afternoon accompanied by a MaltaToday journalist, where she will meet relatives who will be waiting for her with a truck to transport the aid.
Aided by Skop – the national platform of Maltese development NGOs, and St James Cavalier, the donations include medicines, food and clothes donated by the public and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which provided hundreds of antibiotics and medical dressings. Park Towers supermarket donated boxes of food. Egyptair offered the cargo space while the director and staff of Medavia donated the air tickets.
Although the Israeli forces are expected to withdraw from Gaza imminently, the Rafah Crossing is still largely closed to humanitarian aid, although Ms el-Nahhal is determined to reach her destination. “When I started, I didn’t stop to think about how I would get there,” Ms el-Nahhal said. “I just wanted to get things moving. I knew that if I waited, I would have lost precious time. And time is important for Gaza. I wish to thank everyone who donated and helped me in all this.”
Ms el-Nahhal said she was especially moved by a young Maltese child who donated his moneybox full of pocket money to the children of Gaza.
Although she is expected to return next Sunday, Ms el-Nahhal said she will remain for as long as necessary to make sure the cargo arrives.
MaltaToday’s journalist Karl Schembri will be following Ms el-Nahhal on her trip to Rafah and reporting about the situation at the Rafah Crossing.

For daily updates and Sanaa’s diary, log on to:


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