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20 April, 2024
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World Central Kitchen halts Gaza operations after volunteers killed

International outcry and calls for investigation follow tragic incident involving foreign aid workers


At least 7 volunteers from the non-governmental organization "World Central Kitchen" (WCK) lost their lives in a devastating incident in Gaza's Deir al-Balah area. The victims, hailing from countries including the US, Canada, Australia, and Poland, were dedicated to delivering humanitarian aid, particularly food, in the region.

The fatal event occurred during the handling of aid delivered to Gaza by sea through the "Amalthea" humanitarian corridor, managed by WCK in partnership with Cyprus. The organization has long been involved in aiding Gaza.

In response to the tragedy, WCK announced the suspension of its activities in Gaza until further notice, impacting the "Amalthea" initiative. The "Jennifer" ship, associated with WCK, is returning to Larnaca following the incident.

The Cypriot Foreign Ministry emphasized the necessity of absolute respect for international humanitarian efforts, urging a thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding the volunteers' deaths.

The incident sparked widespread international reaction, with outcry and demands for accountability from the countries of the deceased volunteers. Amid escalating tensions with Iran, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) faced scrutiny, although the specifics of the tragedy remain under investigation.

Preliminary data indicates that WCK operates in coordination with the IDF, with the military reportedly aware of the organization's movements. Additionally, evidence suggests the involvement of Hellfire Class Munitions, raising questions about potential responsibility.

As investigations unfold, contrasting narratives emerge against the backdrop of the ongoing conflict in Gaza, underscoring the complexity of humanitarian efforts amid geopolitical turmoil.

Cyprus  |  Gaza  |  humanitarian  |  aid  |  volunteers

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