It has been six days since Dina Alalami heard from her household in Gaza Metropolis after she obtained a textual content message from a relative informing her that they had been alive.
The 33-year-old mom of two, who has been dwelling in Qatar’s capital Doha for the previous 5 years, has no thought whether or not her sister, two brothers-in-law, two nephews and three different family members are nonetheless alive or have fallen sufferer to Israeli bombardment that has killed greater than 11,500 individuals in Gaza.
“On Friday [November 10], they determined to go away their home and head south as a result of the Israeli tanks had gotten nearer and had been surrounding the world,” Dina advised Al Jazeera on Thursday.
“They took the choice as a result of they mentioned they wouldn’t survive the evening in the event that they stayed. We known as the Crimson Cross and requested them to assist safe a protected passage for them.”
However the Crimson Cross and Crimson Crescent mentioned they had been unable to assist.
The household left their houses on November 10 through the four-hour pause – a day after Israel introduced a each day four-hour window to permit Palestinians to flee from the north to the south.
At about midday, the household left the home waving white flags. Dina’s two sisters, who’re married to 2 brothers, had left their houses on the primary day of the conflict to remain at their in-laws’ villa, additionally in Gaza Metropolis.
Dina was speaking to her youngest sister Rulla on the cellphone because the group cautiously moved ahead when out of the blue screams pierced the air. Their different sister Lina had crumpled to the ground, blood soaking by means of her shirt after an Israeli tank fired at them.
Rulla dragged Lina, getting her so far as the doorway of the Bakri constructing on Shuhada avenue, and tried to manage first help. She noticed a gunshot wound to her sister’s chest.
However because the Israeli tank hearth continued, Rulla had no selection however to go away her and run inside. Rulla’s husband Bashar Khayal was shot in his hand, and his sister Dalia was additionally wounded.
Behind them, Bashar and Dalia’s grandmother Feryal was mendacity immobile on the road, killed.
Rulla advised Dina precisely the place they had been and begged her to get in contact with the Worldwide Committee for the Crimson Cross (ICRC) to avoid wasting them. The constructing was behind al-Zaytoun pharmacy, Rulla mentioned, by the Abbas intersection.
Dina known as the ICRC. They advised her they couldn’t go to the world.
‘Worst feeling on this planet’
The subsequent day, on Saturday, Dina bought the information she had been dreading. Lina had died, her physique nonetheless on the entrance of the constructing.
Dalia had additionally been killed, succumbing to her wounds.
Lina’s two younger boys, four-year-old Mohammad and nine-month-old Majed, had been amongst these trapped contained in the constructing with their father Tareq Khayal, their grandmother Dalia, their aunt Suha, Rulla, and Bashar. They’d no meals, water or electrical energy.
Their cellphone batteries dying, Suha was in a position to ship Dina one final message: “We’re alive”.
Dina flew to Cairo, Egypt, over the weekend, the place her father lives alone, and was joined by her brother who lives in Dubai.
“Simply the considered these two younger boys not having water to drink or meals to eat, the thought that they might die of dehydration or hunger…” her voice trails off, her breath catching.
“It’s the worst feeling on this planet, this helplessness,” she mentioned. “My sister bought killed, and her physique remains to be mendacity on the road. There’s no respect for the lifeless, and that alone burns our hearts.”
Greater than 11,300 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli assaults on the Gaza Strip since October 7, nearly all of them girls and youngsters. The healthcare system has collapsed because of the complete siege imposed on the territory by Israel, and on Wednesday, Israeli forces raided the largest hospital within the strip, al-Shifa, following by means of on their earlier threats regardless of sufferers and hundreds of displaced individuals sheltering there.
Dina final visited Gaza again in the summertime for Rulla’s marriage ceremony to Bashar. The 2 had been engaged for seven years and tied the knot in August after Rulla completed her medical research in Egypt.
“My sisters are six and 7 years youthful than me, so we had been like greatest pals,” Dina mentioned.
“I want I used to be with them proper now. I want we might both die or reside collectively.”