World Food Programme says it cannot do its job in Gaza

FILE PHOTO: Palestinians gather to get their share of charity food offered by volunteers, amid food shortages, in Rafah

ROME (Reuters) - The World Food Programme (WFP) said it was becoming impossible to get supplies to hungry people in the Gaza Strip as Israel stepped up its attacks on targets there in its war with Hamas.

"With law and order breaking down, any meaningful humanitarian operation is impossible," the WFP's Deputy Executive Director Carl Skau said in a statement after a visit to the Palestinian enclave on Friday.

"With just a fraction of the needed food supplies coming in, a fatal absence of fuel, interruptions to communications systems and no security for our staff or for the people we serve at food distributions, we cannot do our job," he added.

The United Nations agency showed during a truce that collapsed last week that it was able to deliver if conditions allowed, and Skau, who is Swedish, called for a "humanitarian ceasefire".

"We have food on trucks, but we need more than one crossing. And once the trucks are inside, we need free and safe passage to reach Palestinians wherever they are," he added.

(Writing by Keith Weir; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)