The War on Gaza

A Timeline of Events and Anera's Humanitarian Response

The ongoing war since October 7, 2023, has devastated Gaza, with extensive Israeli bombings leading to widespread destruction of water and sewage infrastructure, healthcare, telecommunications, and housing.

Above: An overview of the timeline covering six months of war in Gaza.

Below is a more comprehensive and interactive timeline detailing key events and Anera's ongoing response to the current Gaza war, which will continue to be updated as developments unfold.

October 2023

In the first two weeks of the war, Israel had imposed a total blockade on the Gaza Strip, preventing the entry of vital necessities including food, water, medicine, fuel, and electricity. These restrictions had tightened the existing blockade imposed since 2007, exacerbating the humanitarian crisis. Fuel shortages prevented the purification or pumping of water, and fuel had been necessary for transporting aid and powering essential facilities like healthcare centers. On October 21, humanitarian aid trucks were finally allowed to enter Gaza, but restrictions had meant they were entering at a rate well below prewar levels, and far below the numbers needed to address the huge needs.

On October 12, 2023, 1.1 million Palestinians had received evacuation orders to relocate south of Wadi Gaza to escape bombing and Israeli military operations. Despite promises of safety in the southern areas, bombing had continued across all of Gaza. Some civilians in northern Gaza had chosen not to evacuate, either due to physical constraints or the fear of permanent displacement, echoing the collective trauma ingrained in Palestinians from generations of forced dislocation onto diminishing lands.

October 7

War begins between Israel and Hamas. Israel and Hezbollah in Lebanon also begin exchanging fire across Lebanon’s southern border with Israel.

October 9

Israeli authorities impose a complete blockade on food, water, electricity, and fuel to Gaza.

October 11

UNRWA announces the first deaths of humanitarian aid workers.

Gaza’s sole power plant depletes its fuel reserves. There is no electricity in Gaza.

October 11

Anera’s Gaza team initiates food parcel distributions to 5,000 displaced families.

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October 13

Evacuation orders affect over 1 million Palestinians north of Wadi Gaza and 23 hospitals, displacing hundreds of thousands.

Most of Anera’s staff evacuate from their homes.

Gazans fleeing in panic from the north to the south, October 13, 2023.

Gazans fleeing in panic from the north to the south, October 13, 2023.

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October 16

Hot meal distributions commence, serving 15,000 individuals at UN shelters in Khan Younis.

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October 17

A devastating explosion at Al Ahli Baptist hospital claims the lives of hundreds of people.

October 20

Regular cleaning services at shelters begins.

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October 21

Israel permits the entry of the first aid trucks into Gaza since October 7.

October 21

Procurement of fresh vegetables from Gaza farmers to distribute to displaced families.

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October 23

Provision of 1,180 liters of fuel to desalination plant, producing 800,000 liters of water

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October 27

Israel initiates a ground invasion and disrupts telecommunications in Gaza for 36 hours.

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November 2023

As November unfolds, the dire situation concerning food and water exacerbates, compounded by a significant toll on civilian lives due to Israeli airstrikes. A study conducted by Harvard’s FXB Center in November 2023 revealed the extensive damage inflicted on vital infrastructure in the Gaza Strip's five governorates, with over half of healthcare, education, and water facilities affected by Israeli attacks between October 7th and November 22nd, 2023. A brief cessation in hostilities, observed from November 24th to 30th, allowed a window for increased humanitarian aid to enter Gaza and be distributed, albeit insufficiently to alleviate the widespread suffering among the population.

November 1

Rafah border crossing opens for evacuations, coinciding with the bombing of Jabalia refugee camp.

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November 3

Delivery of Anera’s first external shipment of aid into Gaza since the war’s start. The shipment flew to Jordan and went into Gaza by truck. It contained 153,920 medical treatments.

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November 7

Anera’s first free health day provides medical professionals’ services and medicine treatments

Three healthcare providers and a patient at the open healthcare clinic.

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November 8

Additional ordered evacuations displace 40,000 people to southern Gaza in the following days.

November 10

Despite sheltering civilians and patients, Al Shifa, Al Rantisi, Al Nasser, Al Quds, Indonesian, mental health and ophthalmology hospitals are bombed.

November 15

Commencement of psychosocial support activities, focusing on addressing the emotional toll on children

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November 24

A temporary ceasefire comes into effect, facilitating the entry of aid into Gaza.

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November 25

30th psychosocial support session

5 million meals served

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December 2023

Since the resumption of hostilities on December 1, the situation in Gaza has only worsened. Following additional evacuation orders, over 1 million of Gaza's 2 million residents are now concentrated in Rafah, the smallest of Gaza's governorates. In these overcrowded conditions, desperation for resources is escalating, leading people to resort to extreme measures for survival. Despite the tireless efforts of organizations like Anera and numerous other humanitarian actors to aid as many individuals as possible, the situation continues to rapidly deteriorate.

Adding to the already dire crisis, the Israeli military, as of December 3, has imposed restrictions on movement between Gaza governorates, hindering the delivery of crucial humanitarian aid. Urging Gaza’s 2 million civilians to relocate to a unilaterally designated 'humanitarian zone' smaller than the Las Vegas Strip and less than half the size of John F. Kennedy International Airport, the Israeli military exacerbates the plight of Gaza's population. With over 85% of Gaza's residents — approximately 1.8 million people — displaced, the humanitarian crisis is severe and shows no signs of abating.

December 1

The 7-day ceasefire concludes, leading to the resumption of intense bombardment.

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December 3

Distribution of vouchers to 5,000 displaced people to buy clothing in local stores.

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December 15

First significant attack on Rafah, the designated “safe zone” in the southernmost part of Gaza.

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December 19

Delivery of 1,986 mattresses.

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December 19 - 21

Anera President Sean Carroll visits staff and projects in Gaza.

Sean Carroll and Sami Matar, Anera Gaza Program Manager, in Gaza.

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December 20

Installation of 127 water tanks with a total capacity of 300,000 L near displaced families.

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December 21

The UN reports 76,018 individuals are displaced from south Lebanon due to the ongoing hostilities with Israel.

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December 26

Israel initiates a significant ground offensive in the central Gaza Strip, resulting in the displacement of hundreds of thousands.

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December 27

Establishment of the first tekia (community
kitchen) in an informal shelter in Rafah, addressing growing starvation and malnutrition.

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December 29

South Africa lodges a case at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), accusing Israel of genocide in Gaza.

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January 2024

On January 1, a mass evacuation to Rafah ensued as per directives from the Israeli military, amid intense fighting in Khan Younis and Deir Al Balah. These events marked a grim start to the new year, exacerbating the already precarious situation in Gaza. By January 9, the Famine Review Committee's report underscored the severity of the crisis, declaring that Gaza had surpassed Phase 5, the threshold for catastrophic acute food insecurity. The situation worsened further on January 12 when a prolonged telecommunications blackout halted all cell service in Gaza for nearly a week, cutting off vital communication channels for residents.

Amidst the escalating crisis, on January 26, the United States and several other countries voted to suspend funding to UNRWA, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees. This decision further strained the already stretched humanitarian efforts in Gaza, adding another layer of challenge to addressing the pressing needs of the population. As each day passed, the situation in Gaza grew increasingly dire, underscoring the urgent need for international intervention and assistance to alleviate the suffering of its inhabitants.

January 1

Mass evacuation to Rafah, following orders from the Israeli military. Intense fighting in Khan Younis, Deir Al Balah.

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January 4

Anera welcomes its first ever staffers in Egypt, to coordinate the complicated logistics of getting aid into Gaza through Egypt.

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January 5

10 million meals served.

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January 9

Famine Review Committee reports that Gaza surpasses Phase 5, the threshold for catastrophic acute food insecurity.

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January 10

First batch of 26,100 flatbreads baked.

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January 12

Longest telecommunications blackout halts all cell service in Gaza for nearly a week.

> An update about Anera's Gaza staff from January 12.

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January 20

4th community kitchen established.

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January 22

100th psychosocial support session held.

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January 26

The US and other countries vote to suspend funding to UNRWA.

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February 2024

On February 14, the Israeli military begins a two-week period without allowing any trucks into Gaza, further intensifying starvation and need. Later that month on February 28, the Gaza Health Ministry reported that six children had died of malnutrition. The next day, Israeli troops opened fire on Gazans awaiting food aid, resulting in the death of over 100 Palestinians and injuring over 700.

Anera distributes its 30,000th hygiene kit in Gaza along with thousands of mattresses and hundreds of boxes of winter clothing to families. Response efforts also include thousands of packs of diapers. On February 27, the total number of meals served reached 18 million. That same day, the 150,000th bottle of water is distributed.

February 2

Delivery of the initial 894 tarps.

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February 9

30,000th hygiene kit distributed.

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February 14

A two-week period without any trucks entering begins, attributed to Israeli military operations in Rafah. Starvation intensifies.

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February 14

Distributed 300 boxes of winter clothing, each with enough for a family of six.

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February 23

Distribution of 8,400 packs of diapers.

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February 26

3,500th mattress distributed.

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February 27

150,000th bottle of water distributed.

18 million meals served.

Food in North Gaza Anera

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February 28

Gaza Health Ministry reports that six children have died of malnutrition.

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February 29

Israeli troops open fire on Gazans awaiting food aid, resulting in the death of over 100 individuals and injuring over 700.

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March 2024

On March 8, Mousa Shawwa, Anera’s logistics coordinator in Gaza, along with some of his family members, are killed in an Israeli attack. Ten days later, the Israeli military initiated a two-week assault on Gaza's largest medical facility, Al Shifa Hospital. On March 25, the United Nations Security Council passed a resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire.

Anera serves a total of 20 million meals and marks its fourth millionth medical treatment delivered on March 18. A few days later, the 25,835th blanket is distributed to a family in need along with the 50th free health clinic day. The same day as the UN resolution is passed, Anera established its 11th community kitchen.

March 8

Mousa Shawwa, Anera’s logistics coordinator in Gaza, and family members are killed in an Israeli attack.

Remembering Mousa Shawwa

March 10

Ramadan begins amidst insufficient food supplies, with no imminent ceasefire in sight.

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March 15

20 million meals served.

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March 18

Israel initiates a two-week assault on Gaza’s largest medical facility, Al Shifa Hospital, resulting in the deaths of 300 individuals.

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March 18

4 millionth medical treatment delivered.

An Anera staff member bends over a box of medicine to distribute it.

Anera's medical donations coordinator and pharmacist Ahmad Najjar counts medicines in Anera's distribution center from a shipment in February. The medications necessary to treat water-borne diseases have been in short supply since the war began.

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March 20

25,835th blanket distributed.

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March 24

50th free health day held.

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March 25

The United Nations Security Council passes a resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire.

A Call for Ceasefire by Anera

March 25

11th community kitchen established.

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March 30

3,669th tarp distributed.

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April 2024

On April 1, the arrival of the first 704 tents in Gaza signals a glimmer of hope for displaced families living in temporary camps, offering a semblance of shelter amidst the ongoing conflict. Tragically, the same day witnesses the loss of seven aid workers from World Central Kitchen, who perish in an airstrike, highlighting the perilous conditions faced by humanitarian workers. Despite the adversity, three days later, Anera's unwavering commitment to providing aid is demonstrated as their 416th truck of relief supplies enters Gaza, striving to alleviate the suffering of the affected population. As April 7 solemnly marks six months of war, it serves as a stark reminder of the enduring toll of war on the people of Gaza.

April 1

Seven World Central Kitchen aid workers are killed in an airstrike.

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April 1

First 704 tents brought into Gaza.

169th psychosocial support session held.

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April 4

416th truck brought into Gaza.

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April 7

The sad milestone of six months of war.

A view of the skyline reveals a partially standing building and piles of rubble around it from former buildings.

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April 10

A UN mission to Khan Younis reports severe destruction, rendering Nasser, Al Amal, and Al Khair hospitals non-functional. On the same day, a UNICEF aid convoy to northern Gaza is hit with live ammunition.

April 11

Anera resumes Gaza operations after pausing for 9 days, for the first time in its history, due to threats to Gaza staff’s safety.

Learn more about Anera's pause in operations

April 12

Anera distributes 20,000 Eid gift boxes to children to offer them a little joy during the holiday.

Anera distributed eid boxes to children in Gaza in April 2024

April 18

From April 18 to the 20th, a 50-hour Israeli operation in Nur Shams Refugee Camp near Tulkarem, West Bank, kills 14 Palestinians and damages homes, stores, roads, and vital infrastructure.

April 24

The Palestinian Civil Defense reports 324 bodies are recovered from Nasser Medical Complex.

The WFP warns all famine thresholds will likely be passed within six weeks.

April 24

Anera delivers our first shipment of medical donations to the north today. 16 pallets of hygiene kits, healthcare supplies and medicines (including pregnancy multivitamins, antidiabetics and antihypertensive medications) go to two healthcare facilities in Gaza City. The shipments come from Direct Relief and Americares.

May 2024

May marks seven months of war on Gaza. Anera and many other humanitarian organizations send a public letter to President Biden urging the U.S. to prevent a Rafah offensive, along with taking action to alleviate the humanitarian crisis. For a brief time, it seems that a ceasefire might be possible, but that does not happen. Israeli forces invade Rafah on May 6th. The misery deepens in Gaza as hundreds of thousands of people move once again to areas that might offer a modicum of safety. Anera continues delivering aid, but resources run low.

May 1

Anera’s health staff in Gaza begin running wound management clinics, treating 17 patients on the first day.

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May 3

Anera distributes 4,000 boxes of clothes from UNICEF.

May 5

In partnership with the UAE, Anera brings 400 tons of food into Gaza.

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May 6

After forcefully evacuating 450,000 people, Israeli Defense Forces invade Rafah, seize the Rafah crossing and prevent aid from entering Gaza.

On May 15, Anera signs on to a letter deploring the invasion and urging action toward a ceasefire.

Read the letter

May 8

In partnership with the Middle East Council of Churches, Anera implements our first health day in the Shejaiya area in North Gaza. Medicines and medical supplies came from Americares and Direct Relief. 150 people seek medical care on this day.

May 9

The health team implements Anera's eighth wound management clinic day in Rafah, supported by Together Rising. Medical professionals attended to 27 patients, including nine new cases and 18 follow-up appointments.

May 11

Anera staff in North Gaza is ordered to evacuate. Our distribution center gets caught up in the red (evacuation) zone as well, abruptly halting Anera's operations in the north. We urge the Israeli authorities to spare our center, which holds vital supplies for starving northern families.

Our colleague Sami is visiting during this time and writes a post about his experience.

Read Sami's blog post

May 14

Human Rights Watch releases "Gaza: Israelis Attacking Known Aid Worker Locations," citing, among other fatalities, the death of Anera’s own Mousa Shawa.

One of WCK's cars that was attacked

Read the Human Rights Watch Report

A Message from Our President & CEO

Whether you turn on the news or scroll social media, all reports are the same: time is running out for Palestinians in Gaza. Despite the odds, Anera has served over 25 million meals since the start of the war. This is in addition to distributing over five million medicines and medical treatments, thousands of blankets and hygiene kits, coordinating the arrival and distribution of hundreds of truckloads of food and other aid, facilitating health clinic and wound management centers, and guiding psychosocial support sessions for children. For those we can help, it means the world to receive tangible help in their darkest hour.

Each and every day, our team delivers more than just food, they deliver hope. And that's only possible thanks to people who choose to help. When you donate to Anera, you help us provide displaced families with food, shelter, water, and other basic necessities. Please consider supporting our emergency response efforts today.

In gratitude and solidarity,

Sean Carroll Signature

Sean Carroll
President & CEO

Hot meals are delivered to a displaced Palestinian family in Gaza. | March 31, 2024.
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