The U.S. plans to establish a field hospital in southern Gaza, the territory caught in the crossfire amid the Israel-Hamas War, the the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) announced Tuesday.
USAID Administrator Samantha Power said the field hospital will be part of a new $21 million aid package for Gaza and the West Bank. She arrived in the region Tuesday on a military plane carrying humanitarian supplies, second U.S. military flight to deliver assistance to Gaza since the war began in October.
Some 36,000 pounds of food and medical supplies were ferried Tuesday to the Egyptian city of El-Arish, about 30 miles from the Rafah border crossing into Gaza.
The announcement of the U.S. plans for a field hospital comes as the war is spreading from northern Gaza into the south—where Israelis had initially told Gazan civilians to flee—and southern Gaza’s Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis was reported Tuesday to be overwhelmed with dead and wounded.
More than 15,500 people have been confirmed killed in Gaza since the start of the conflict, according to Gaza’s health ministry.
Israel has sworn to destroy Hamas in response to the militant organization’s October 7 terrorist attack on Israel, when gunmen killed 1,200 people and took 240 hostages, according to Israeli officials.
It was not immediately clear when the new U.S. field hospital would be up and running or exactly where in southern Gaza it would be located.
And while it was also not clear what other nations or organizations were helping to fund the field hospital, USAID did tell CBS News that it would be staffed by personnel from nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) working in partnership with the U.S.