Staffs' Death: World Central Kitchen Halt Gaza Aid Efforts

Following the tragic loss of seven team members in an Israeli airstrike, World Central Kitchen (WCK) has made the difficult decision to pause its operations in Gaza, citing the dangers faced by humanitarian workers in conflict zones.

The organization stated that the casualties were among the team members of an aid convoy departing from a warehouse in central Gaza on Monday.

In response to the incident, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have initiated a thorough review process. Meanwhile, Gaza’s media office, under Hamas control, has pointed the finger at Israel. WCK remains an indispensable contributor to Gaza’s welfare, playing a significant role as one of the main suppliers of essential aid to the region.

It said that it would “be making decisions about the future of [its] work soon”.

The charity has reported that the aid convoy was struck as it departed from the Deir al-Balah warehouse, which had recently received and unloaded over 100 tons of vital humanitarian food aid transported to Gaza via the maritime route.

The convoy comprised three vehicles, with two of them armored for protection. Africa Today News, New york, has learned that all three vehicles were impacted by the strike.

Read also: US Approves Bombs, Jets For Israel Amid Gaza Ceasefire Talks

WCK said it had coordinated the convoy’s movements with the IDF when it was hit.

A Palestinian medical source told the press the workers had been wearing bullet-proof vests bearing the WCK logo.

The Palestine Red Crescent Society has announced the successful retrieval of all seven bodies from the incident site after a demanding operation that lasted several hours.

Additionally, the humanitarian group stated that the bodies had been transported to the Abu Yousef al-Najjar hospital in southern Gaza, where arrangements were being made for their transfer via the Rafah border crossing into Egypt.

The IDF on Tuesday said it was conducting a thorough review at the highest level to understand the circumstances of the “tragic incident”.

“We will get to the bottom of this and we will share our findings transparently,” IDF spokesperson Rear Adm Daniel Hagari vowed.

“The work of WCK is critical; they are on the frontlines of humanity.”

According to Mr. Hagari, the IDF has been in tight coordination with the World Central Kitchen, actively assisting them in their noble mission to provide food and humanitarian aid to the Gaza population.

WCK has revealed that the workers who perished in the incident were of various nationalities, including Australian, Polish, British, Palestinian, and a dual US-Canadian citizen.

Africa Today News, New York

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