UN Schools – No Shelter for Civilians

By Huda Droll

Beit Hanoun and Beit Lahiya, two different cities in Gaza, two different families in Gaza, both suffering from the same bombing that will change their lives forever.

Najah Mohammed Abel Dayem

Najah Mohammed Abel Dayem

War is a terrifying experience. It can and does cause serious injuries from high stress levels, high blood pressure, and heart attacks. All of this, and you are not actually being bombed. Just being in the war itself is quite a traumatic event.

Two stories of two Palestinian families who fled their homes with their families at the request of the Israelis. The Israelis even told the families where to go. These two families listened, to be safe they left their houses and all they knew about home for an UNWRA school in Jabaliya. Both families weighed the outcome of staying or going. They decided on family first. They both decided to evacuate due to the location instructed by the Israelis. Both families, like all of Gaza, felt the United Nations (UN) would protect them.

Imagine the feeling of reaching a shelter provided by the UN. It was a heavy pressure relieved from both families. They were together, they were alive, but not for long.

On July 30, 2014 an F16 bombed the UN School in which they and many other families had sought shelter.

Najah Mohammed Abel Dayem, a 50 year old Palestinian woman, suffered shrapnel fragments in her abdomen, face and eyes. The fragments to her eyes caused permanent blindness. Her pregnant daughter, her son and her daughter in law were also injured.

She feels she will never see her loved ones again. And the saddest part of all is she never really will see her son and her husband, even if she had her eyesight. They died beside her at the UN school and no one has yet told her.

Ehab Mohammed Sehweel, also suffering from shrapnel fragments but to his entire body, is still in a critical condition. His injuries are quite severe. Only fifteen years old, sleeping somewhat peacefully because of the protection from the UN, he woke up at 5:00 am due to the shelling and bombs. It took him no time at all to realize that his location was the target. He tried his best to help his family out of harm’s way. One brother died and his mother, along with 2 other brothers, suffered injuries.

Ehab Sehweel

Ehab Sehweel

Both families had left their houses intact.

Right now neither family knows the condition of their houses, or even if there are houses to return to…

No comments yet.

Write a comment:

You must be logged in to post a comment.