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U.S. service member seriously injured, flown to Israel while working at Gaza relief dock

Three US service members were injured, one of them seriously, while working at the army aid dock in Gaza on Thursday.

Troops had been working to deliver humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip at the temporary floating dock that the United States completed last week, U.S. Vice Admiral Brad Cooper, deputy commander of U.S. Central Command, told Reuters.

The incident marks the first injuries to US forces during the operation.

Three U.S. service members were injured Thursday, including one who suffered serious injuries. US Army Photo/Staff Sgt. Malcolm Cohens-Ashley

Two soldiers suffered a sprained ankle and a minor back injury.

“Two were very minor and routine injuries. Those individuals returned to duty,” Cooper said.

A third service member, who was injured on a boat at sea, was medically evacuated to a hospital in Israel, he said.

A U.S. defense official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters the individual was in critical condition.

The incident marks the first injuries to US forces during the operation. Via REUTERS

The controversial floating dock was announced by President Biden in March to facilitate humanitarian aid to millions of people in the Gaza Strip during Israel’s ongoing military offensive in the enclave.

It is estimated to cost around $320 million during its first 90 days after opening last Thursday and will be operated by about 1,000 US service members, whom Biden assured would not enter Gaza.

The Pentagon has said it will prioritize the safety of US military personnel.

Two soldiers suffered a sprained ankle and a minor back injury. Via REUTERS

“We are clear-eyed and continue to look at force protection all day, every day and as things stand now we assess that operations can continue,” Cooper said.

On Tuesday, the Pentagon said 569 metric tons had been unloaded at the dock, but none of them had reached the Palestinians, who urgently need food, water and other vital supplies.

Pentagon press secretary Air Force Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder said some trucks, operated by nongovernmental organizations tasked with delivering aid to another staging area, had been looted by looters.

“We anticipate that assistance will be distributed here in the coming days, of course conditions permitting,” Ryder said.

With pole cables

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