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First ship carrying food aid arrives in Gaza, ‘preparations underway’ to dispatch second

The first ship carrying 200 tons of food gathered by World Central Kitchen (WCK) arrived in Gaza Friday and, the organization announced, more will be coming soon.

WCK, the charity founded by celebrity chef José Andrés, released a statement that its team unloaded the aid in Gaza. The food was carried on a ship by the Spanish aid group Open Arms and is part of the WCK’s effort “to bring as much aid as possible to Palestinians by sea.”

The ship departed from Cyprus on Tuesday and WCK announced preparations are already underway to dispatch a second boat carrying “hundreds more tons of aid, along with heavy machinery to expedite the offloading process.”

Andrés posted on X, formerly known as Twitter, shared the news of the ship’s arrival.

“We did it! Teams of @WCKitchen and @openarms_fund working hard to offload all 200 tons…12 trucks! This was a test! To learn…we could bring thousands of tons a week…with what we learn we will get better,” he said online.

“I want us to build a highway of constantly flowing aid on the sea as just one more access point into Gaza that is so desperately needed,” WCK CEO Erin Gore, who was recently on the ground in Cyprus, said in a statement.

The delivery includes rice, flour, legumes, canned vegetables and proteins. It was organized alongside the United Arab Emirates and Cyprus, the release said.

The United States and other allies began sending air drops of aid to civilians in Gaza in early March. President Biden announced that the U.S. military would build a temporary port on Gaza’s coast to increase aid deliveries by sea. Still, the floating pier is expected to take up to two months to construct.

The WCK voyage from Cyprus to Gaza was about 200 miles across the Mediterranean Sea

Since the start of the war on Oct. 7, more than 30,000 Palestinians have been killed, the Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry reported. According to the United Nations, a quarter of the territory’s population is starving.

The aid deliveries come as the U.S. and other countries continue to negotiate with Israel and Hamas about a temporary cease-fire, which has yet to be reached.

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