Gaza aid from Cyprus resumes after pause following aid worker killings

Vessels depart with humanitarian aid for Gaza, from Larnaca

NICOSIA (Reuters) -Aid shipments to Gaza from Cyprus resumed late on Friday, a Cypriot source and a UAE official said, with a ship carrying food to the besieged Palestinian enclave after a pause following Israel's killing of seven aid workers.

The World Central Kitchen NGO had paused aid to review its activity in the territory after the early April attack, halting direct shipments into Gaza from Cyprus.

A small cargo vessel left the port of Larnaca on Friday night with aid donated by the United Arab Emirates, the Cypriot source and the UAE official said.

"The UAE confirms the departure of its humanitarian ship from Cyprus carrying 400 tonnes of food aid for the people of Gaza," the official said.

"The UAE continues to explore all avenues with its regional and international partners to address the urgent humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip and maximize the delivery of aid to the Strip by land, air and sea."

Israel's six-month old war against Hamas in Gaza, in response to an attack by the militant group in southern Israel, has killed more than 34,000 people, Palestinian health authorities say, and caused a humanitarian disaster for the enclave's more than 2 million inhabitants.

The U.S. has started construction of a floating jetty on Gaza's Mediterranean coast that will enable aid deliveries pre-screened in Cyprus with Israeli oversight. Once that aid reaches Gaza, it will still need to pass through Israeli checkpoints on land.

(Reporting by Michele Kambas and Maha El Dahan; Editing by David Holmes)