Security and logistical issues appeared to be at the forefront of ongoing delays in delivering the humanitarian aid from Cyprus to Gaza, it emerged on Thursday, as the government continued to skirt providing clear answers over the matter.

Sources cited by the Cyprus News Agency (CNA) said Israel has greenlighted ‘in principle’ the creation of a humanitarian maritime corridor, dubbed by Cyprus’ government as the ‘Amalthia’ humanitarian plan.

Nonetheless, repeated requests by the Cyprus Mail to the president’s office and the foreign ministry for comment yielded no answers.

On Thursday afternoon, an anonymous source presumably close to the government told CNA that “the conditions for the full implementation of Cyprus’ initiative for humanitarian aid to Gaza, as well as the related timeline, are affected by asymmetric factors.”

“The ‘Amalthia’ plan is in effect. We are at a sensitive point, doing everything we can to help. And we will continue,” the same source said, adding noted there is consensus in the international community regarding the escalating need to provide humanitarian aid to the civilian population in Gaza, as well as its moral obligation to work in that direction.

“Our contribution to the plan at this stage was deemed sufficient,” the source continued.

“The conditions for the full implementation of the initiative, as well as the related timeline, are affected by factors beyond our control.”

Despite Israel’s approval for a corridor to transfer aid to the Gaza Strip, the fate of the ship containing 80 tonnes of aid that was dispatched over one week ago, remained unclear.

According to the latest reports, the scheduled route of the British naval vessel identified as RFA Lyme Bay, which was tasked with transporting humanitarian aid to Gaza via Cyprus, was changed due to security concerns.

Images circulating online showed the vessel docked in Malta. However, no official government sources have confirmed its current exact location, which continues to remain a mystery.

According to ‘Israel Hayom’, on Tuesday, Israel’s Foreign Minister Eli Cohen relayed a positive note regarding the humanitarian maritime corridor to his counterparts in Cyprus and the UK.

However, he also added that the initiative will finally start only after all necessary preparations and prerequisites are in place. He did not specify what exactly is needed for the initiative to begin, nor did he give a specific timeline for it.

The reticence in providing more information both on the ‘Amalthia’ plan and on the location of the British vessel that departed from Cyprus last week suggest that the much-publicised humanitarian maritime corridor initiative is still far from being a reality.

The maritime corridor initiative stems from Greece and Cyprus and was proposed during the conflict’s outset after Israel declared its withdrawal from civilian responsibilities in the Gaza Strip.

Cohen, alongside his Cypriot counterpart Konstantinos Kombos, inspected the Zenon multifunctional coordination centre at the Larnaca port last week. The port was anticipated to serve as the launchpad for the maritime corridor, as it would facilitate the inspections of goods, in coordination with Israel.

According to Cohen, the choice of Larnaca port was for Israel to avoid any direct contact with Gaza, as the vessels’ cargo would have been inspected on Cypriot soil, ‘Israel Hayom’ reported.

This, however, was never officially confirmed by Cypriot government officials, who are yet to clarify whether the ‘Amalthia’ plan is still feasible and whether the RFA Lyme Bay will eventually manage to receive the all-clear in order to deliver the humanitarian aid to Gaza.