News ID: 115085
Publish Date : 16 May 2023 - 22:47

Dozens of Families Left Homeless in Gaza by Zionist Strikes

GAZA (Dispatches) – Near the debris of their home in the northern Gaza Strip, the Nabhan extended family spent their first night of displacement sleeping on the ground, in the open, after a Zionist air strike flattened their four-storey building.
The 50 members of the family - all civilians, including five people with physical and mental health problems - lived in eight separate apartments.
The air strike was carried out on the last day of the occupying regime’s five-day-attack on the Gaza Strip - in a campaign it launched on 9 May - before an Egyptian-mediated ceasefire took effect at 10pm local time on Saturday.
The attack left at least 33 Palestinians killed, including six children and three women.
“My home is adjacent to my family’s home. I decided to stay with them when the attack started because I thought it was safer than mine,” Um Mohammed, the eldest sister in the family, told Middle East Eye.
“We suddenly saw my brother running towards us and shouting ‘get out of the house it will be targeted’, we told him ‘you are talking about our home, that’s our only shelter, where will be go?’”.
“He said ‘we only have five minutes, get out now’.”
According to eyewitnesses, a Zionist officer called one of the family’s neighbors on Saturday evening, and asked him to inform the family that the house would be targeted.
“He [the neighbor] told him [the officer] that the building housed people with disabilities, and that it would be impossible to get them out of the house in only five minutes. The officer said that it was not his business and that they would target the house anyway,” Um Mohammed said.
Um Mohammed, whose home was also damaged in the strike, said that the family would stay displaced until a solution is found, because none of their relatives’ houses could contain their large number.
“We are 50 individuals. People would welcome us for a day or two, but no one would have the capacity to keep us any longer.”
On the ground near Um Mohammed sat her younger sister, Ayat, who suffers from both physical disabilities and mental health problems.
When asked about her age, the 23-year-old woman told MEE that she was “three years old”. However, she was well aware of what happened last night.
“Suddenly the house was destroyed. We forgot the medicine inside. We forgot the wheelchairs inside. We were afraid, we stayed on the street and we slept here,” she said.
“We want [another] house that has medicine and wheelchairs inside.”
During the five days of the attack, the occupying regime completely destroyed at least 93 housing units, and rendered 128 others uninhabitable. Another 1,820 housing units were damaged, according to the Gaza Ministry of Public Works and Housing.
In another neighborhood, in Beit Lahia in the northern Gaza Strip, Samir Taha has already built a tent beside his destroyed home.
On Friday, two F16s flattened the building’s seven apartments and penetrated the ground.
Taha, whose previous home was also destroyed by an air strike in 2014, waited two years before the Gaza Reconstruction Mechanism (GRM) helped him and his married children build this home.
On the ruins of his new home, Taha now stood tearful.
“During the 2014 offensive on Gaza, they bombed another house belonging to us. We remained displaced for two years before the Reconstruction [Mechanism] could build us a home,” the 62-year-old man told MEE.
“I built a tent near my home and stayed in it for two years, I refused to take shelter in schools or to rent a house following the attack,” he continued.
“This time, I will do the same.
“It wasn’t enough that they destroyed the building, but [the missiles] also penetrated the ground. This reflects the terror [they want to inflict].”