In addition to bringing passengers, the plane also carried humanitarian aid to meet food and health needs in areas close to the Gaza Strip

Lieutenants Eniele Santos and Gabrielle Varela / CECOMSAER

Operation Returning in Peace, coordinated by the Federal Government and with strict action by the Ministry of Defense, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Brazilian Air Force (FAB), carried out another mission on Thursday (02/11) to repatriate Brazilians who are in conflict areas in the Middle East.

A FAB VC-2 aircraft, provided by the Presidency of the Republic, took off from Amman, the capital of Jordan, on Wednesday (01/11), with 32 passengers, 6 of whom were elderly and 11 children, from the West Bank. The plane landed in Recife (PE) at dawn on Thursday (02/11), where six were repatriated, and the rest disembarked in Brasília (DF).

Juliana Cristina Alves de Oliveira, who had lived in the West Bank for five years, said she was happy to be back in Brazil and to see the work of the FAB. “When I saw the FAB plane, I cried with joy, I couldn’t believe it, I’ve never been so happy in my life. There was a psychologist on the plane, she was working with us, with the children, who had left their relatives and parents behind,” she said.

FAB crew member, Medical Captain Gustavo Messias Costa, explained how the care work was carried out during more than 30 hours of flights with the elderly, children and people with special needs. “Even before being called upon, a survey has already been carried out of the possibilities and aspects of the flight that could deteriorate health. So we plan this to try to minimize the stresses of the flight, and during the journey we get to know each case, dealing with extremes of age or very old people, or toddlers. It took a lot of thinking, but we were successful,” he explained.

The aircraft left Brazil on October 12 with water filtration equipment and health kits. The cargo contained 40 water purifiers with the capacity to treat more than 220,000 liters a day. With Brazilian technology and manufacturing, the equipment is capable of removing 100% of viruses and bacteria from water. Access to drinking water is one of the greatest difficulties facing the population of the Gaza Strip today. In addition, two health kits were unloaded, each of which serves up to 3,000 people over the course of a month. They consist of medicines and supplies, such as anti-inflammatories, painkillers, antibiotics, as well as gloves and syringes. In all, there are 48 items in each kit, with a total of 267 kilos of materials.

Second aircraft

Another VC-2 aircraft is awaiting the opening of the Gaza border with Egypt to repatriate Brazilians who are in the region, mainly in the south, in the city of Rafah, where bombing has intensified since October 19, twenty-five days after the first Hamas attack.

This plane took off from Brasilia (DF) on Monday (30/10) with a new crew, which included health professionals – a doctor, a psychologist and a nurse, as well as 1.5 tons of food sent to towns near the Gaza Strip. The shipment consisted of rice, sugar, corn products and milk and is already in Egypt, where it is awaiting instructions on how to send it to the border.

After arriving in Egypt, the FAB team faces logistical and bureaucratic challenges, waiting for clearance from the authorities to repatriate the Brazilians. The Brazilian government is in constant contact with local authorities and international organizations to ensure the safety and effectiveness of the mission.

“Brazilian diplomacy remains directly involved in negotiations to guarantee humanitarian aid in the region, to negotiate a ceasefire and to make it possible to open the border for the return of the Brazilians. In October, Brazil chaired the UN Security Council and has acted repeatedly to try to pass a consensual resolution that will help lead to dialogue and peace in the region,” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.

The VC-2 operation in the Gaza Strip exemplifies the fundamental role of the Federal Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in emergency situations and reinforces Brazil’s commitment to humanitarian assistance and the safety of its citizens, regardless of where they are in the world.

To date, the Federal Government’s Operation Returning in Peace has repatriated 1,445 people and 53 pets.

Photos: Petty Officer Johnson Barros, Sergeant Muller Marin, Sergeant Vanessa Sonaly / CECOMSAER
Video: Sergeant Rayanne and Private Laube / CECOMSAER *** Translated by DEFCONPress FYI Team ***

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