Gaza pier resumes operations as aid collects in marshalling area

FILE PHOTO: Trucks deliver humanitarian aid over a temporary pier on the Gaza coast

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. military's floating pier off Gaza has resumed bringing humanitarian aid into the Israeli-besieged Palestinian territory, the Pentagon said on Thursday, even as aid continues to collect in a nearby marshalling area since the United Nations has not restarted transporting it to warehouses.

The pier had been re-attached to the shore on Wednesday after being temporarily removed last Friday due to poor sea conditions, the latest challenge to the effort that has been hampered by bad weather since it was put into place in May.

U.S. President Joe Biden announced the pier in March for aid deliveries as Israel invaded and bombarded Gaza while also severely limiting aid through land routes, threatening famine conditions.

"Overnight, the transfer of humanitarian assistance from Cyprus to Gaza resumed with more than 656 metric tons, or 1.4 million pounds, being delivered to the marshalling yard in Gaza today," Air Force Major General Patrick Ryder told reporters.

The United Nations said on Friday it had still not resumed transportation of aid from the pier to U.N. World Food Programme warehouses.

The pier has been temporarily removed several times from Gaza's coast. At one point rough seas damaged the pier, forcing repairs.

The U.S. military estimates the pier will cost more than $200 million for the first 90 days and involve about 1,000 service members.

Ryder said the Pentagon had not yet established an end date for the pier, but officials have said it is likely to be a sustainable option only until August or September because the sea state in the region usually worsens after that.

(Reporting by Idrees Ali; Editing by Josie Kao)