Canadian aid worker killed in Gaza strike had young son, says family

FILE PHOTO: Site of a strike on WCK vehicle in central Gaza Strip

(Updates with video and pictures tags)

OTTAWA (Reuters) -Jacob Flickinger, the Canadian aid worker killed in an Israeli air strike on Gaza this week, was a former soldier who had an 18-month-old son, his parents told CBC.

Flickinger, who also had U.S. citizenship, had been in Gaza volunteering for the World Central Kitchen group since early March, they said in an interview on Wednesday.

"He believed very strongly that the work he was doing was important, especially in this case, knowing that there was starvation out there," said his mother, Sylvie Labrecque.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Wednesday said the deaths of Flickinger and six other aid workers in the attack were unacceptable and demanded answers from Israel, which says the air strike was a mistake. Flickinger's father John said he thought the strike had been deliberate.

"Their convoy was clearly marked and they were on a well-used humanitarian route. So in my opinion it was a targeted kill," he said.

Flickinger had recently settled with his wife and son in Costa Rica, his parents said.

"They were a happy little family. Together, they were extremely happy and they loved each other desperately, and they had great projects for the future, for themselves and the child," said Labrecque.

(Reporting by David Ljunggren, Editing by Rosalba O'Brien)