US dispatches ship to start building Gaza pier « Khabarhub
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US dispatches ship to start building Gaza pier


11 March 2024  

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WASHINGTON DC: A U.S. Army ship was on its way to the Mediterranean Sea to start construction of a temporary pier on the Gaza coastline to provide passage for more truckloads of humanitarian aid to famished Palestinians, but officials say it could be as long as two months before the facility is built and operating.

The military’s Central Command said the General Frank S. Besson vessel sailed from a mid-Atlantic U.S. base in Virginia less than 36 hours after President Joe Biden announced the humanitarian effort during his Thursday night State of the Union address.

The eventual plan is for more food and medical supplies to be dispatched to the temporary pier in Gaza from nearby Cyprus after Israeli forces inspect the cargo to make sure no weaponry is included for Hamas militants, now in the sixth month of their war against Israel.

The temporary pier is needed because Gaza has no port infrastructure and Gaza has been under an Israeli navy blockade since 2007, when Hamas took control of the enclave.

There have been few direct sea arrivals since then.

A Spanish charity ship carrying food aid was expected to soon set sail from Cyprus.

The nongovernmental group Open Arms said its vessel would carry 200 tons of food, which its partner, the U.S. charity World Central Kitchen, would then unload on the shores of Gaza where it had constructed a basic dock.

Meanwhile, no cease-fire has been agreed to as had been hoped for by the start of the Muslim holy fasting month of Ramadan, which starts at the first sighting of the crescent moon Sunday and Monday.

Hamas negotiators left Cairo talks last week but said negotiations would resume in the coming days on a possible six-week halt in Gaza fighting.

In addition, the release of some of the remaining 100 or so hostages held by the militants in exchange for dozens of Palestinians jailed by Israel and a big increase in humanitarian aid allowed into Gaza were some of the terms discussed.

(VOA)

Publish Date : 11 March 2024 07:32 AM

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