A drone view of Palestinians gathering on a beach in the hope of getting aid air-dropped over Gaza is seen, amid the ongoi...

Israeli strike kills 4 foreign aid workers, Palestinian driver after delivering food, Gaza medical officials say

DEIR AL-BALAH, Gaza Strip (AP) — An apparent Israeli airstrike killed four international aid workers with the World Central Kitchen charity and their Palestinian driver late Monday after they helped deliver food and other supplies to northern Gaza that had arrived hours earlier by ship, health officials in Gaza said.

Footage showed the bodies of the five dead at Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in the central Gaza town of Deir al-Balah. Several of them wore protective gear with the charity’s logo. Staff showed the passports of three of the dead – British, Australian and Polish. The nationality of the fourth aid worker was not immediately known.

The workers’ car was hit by an Israeli strike just after crossing from northern Gaza after helping deliver aid that had arrived hours earlier on a ship from Cyprus, Mahmoud Thabet, a paramedic from the Palestinian Red Crescent who was on the team that brought the bodies to the hospital, told The Associated Press. The source of fire could not be independently confirmed and the Israeli military did not respond to requests for comment.

NEWS WRAP: 2 Palestinians killed, journalists injured in Israeli strike at Gaza hospital

The aid ships that arrived Monday carried some 400 tons of food and supplies in a shipment organized by the United Arab Emirates and the World Central Kitchen, the charity founded by celebrity chef José Andrés. Last month a ship delivered 200 tons of aid in a pilot run. The Israeli military was involved in coordinating both deliveries. A spokesperson for the charity could not immediately be reached for comment.

The U.S. has touted the sea route as a new way to deliver desperately needed aid to northern Gaza, where several hundred Palestinians face imminent famine, largely cut off from the rest of the territory by Israeli forces. Israel has barred UNRWA, the main U.N. agency in Gaza, from making deliveries to the north, and other aid groups say sending truck convoys north has been too dangerous because of the military’s failure to ensure safe passage.

The strike came hours after Israeli troops ended a two-week raid on Shifa Hospital, Gaza’s largest, leaving the facility largely gutted and a swath of destruction in the surrounding neighborhoods. Footage showed Shifa’s main buildings had been reduced to burned-out husks.

Israel said it launched the raid on Shifa because senior Hamas operatives had regrouped there and were planning attacks. The military said its troops killed 200 militants in the operation, though the claim that they were all militants could not be confirmed, and Palestinians coming to the site after the troops withdrew found bodies of civilians.

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