Ship bringing food aid to Gaza still waiting in Cyprus

Port staffers prepare the aid on a platform near to the docked ship belonging to the Open Arms aid group at the port in Larnaca, Cyprus, on Sunday, March 10, 2024.
Port staffers prepare the aid on a platform near to the docked ship belonging to the Open Arms aid group at the port in Larnaca, Cyprus, on Sunday, March 10, 2024. Copyright AP Photo/Petros Karadjias
By Euronews with AP
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The ship carries 200 tonnes of rice and flour which should offer immediate relief to civilians in Gaza struggling with growing hunger.

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A ship carrying 200 tonnes of food aid meant for civilians in Gaza is still waiting at a port in Cyprus, as Israeli authorities requested to inspect it.

The vessel, which belongs to the Spanish NGO Open Arms, is currently on the south east coast of the island, in the city of Larnaca. It carries 200 tonnes of rice and flour which could provide immediate relief to Gazans struggling with starvation.

The European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said on Friday that the Open Arms ship will make a pilot trip as international donors launched a sea corridor to supply the besieged territory.

After five months of war, civilians in Gaza are now facing a quickly exacerbating famine. Israel said it welcomes the deliveries of aid by sea, but it has asked to check the content of the ship before it departs.

US charity World Central Kitchen, a partner in the mission supplying the food, said the boat will sail off for Gaza as soon as possible.

The ship is expected to take between two and three days before arriving at an undisclosed location in Gaza. There, a crane will help offload the aid and place it on trucks before it is driven north.

Another US military ship carrying equipment to build a temporary pier and aid has already set off.

More than 30,000 people have been killed in Gaza since the beginning of Israel’s war on Hamas, according to local authorities. Most of them were civilians, many women and children.

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