US troops have begun construction of a maritime pier off the coast of Gaza that aims to speed the flow of humanitarian aid into the territory, the Pentagon said.’As an update for our humanitarian assistance support operations to establish the maritime corridor off the coast of Gaza, I can confirm that US military vessels to include the USS Benavidez, have begun to construct the initial stages of the temporary pier and causeway at sea,’ Pentagon spokesman Air Force Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder said in a press briefing.He added, ‘We'll provide much more information in the very near future as we work alongside the international community to rush aid to the people of Gaza.’Ryder said the pier would likely be up and running by early May, and last month said it would take up to 1,000 servicemembers to complete it.The modular causeway system would consist of an offshore platform where ships could deposit aid that would be taken by the Army to a motorized string of steel causeway sections that have been pushed to the shore.’Simply put, they'll establish a temporary offshore maritime pier that allows for shipping vessels to transfer cargo to smaller vessels to transport and offload cargo to a temporary causeway for the delivery of humanitarian aid to Gaza,’ Ryder said in March, while adding, ‘The concept that is being planned involves the presence of US military personnel on military vessels offshore, but does not require US military personnel to go ashore.’The US government announced at the beginning of March that it intended to help set up a temporary harbor to bring food, water and medicine to the war zone in view of the humanitarian emergency in the Palestinian territory.

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