Maghazi refugee camp

In Gaza, succeeding against the odds

Thirteen-year-old Alaa has grown up in Gaza’s Maghazi refugee camp and her family’s home is an example of the typical “old-new” refugee camp dwellings. Comprised of three rooms, a wretched kitchen and an old-fashioned bathroom, the whole house is in need of urgent repair. Alaa lives in the same unhealthy house with her mother, two brothers and three sisters. Although poor, Alaa is a brilliant student. EI correspondent Rami Almeghari reports from the occupied Gaza Strip. 

Yousuf was no longer there

“Yousef, Yousef, Yousef!” was how Aziza Mughari of the Alburaij refugee camp first reacted when news of her son’s death spread in her local community. Her son was being treated in the Israeli hospital of Ekhelof in Tel Aviv for critical injuries he sustained during an Israeli army incursion into the nearby refugee camp of Maghazi almost ten days ago. Because the hospital is inside Israel, Aziza was not able to visit her dying son. “Who will bring me my medicine, who will do errands for me? Son, where are you? I don’t believe you are dead, they are liars,” Aziza, a sick mother, called again on Yousef, but Yousef was no longer there. 

Gaza under darkness

“I have lost a total of $1,000 US dollars since the power supply has been cut, the number of my customers has decreased to minimum, I stay idle at my shop for long hours; what shall I do?” asked 31-year-old Alaa’ Salahat, a local vendor of frozen foods from the central Gaza Strip refugee camp of Maghazi. He spoke of his experience while sitting in the darkness with only a kerosene lamp illuminating the worry lines in his face. “This is really a very terrible situation; we are civilians - what does Israel want? This is really a collective punishment against an entire people,” said Alaa’. 

Sleeping in Gaza under roaring Israeli jets

Israeli jetfighters, mainly F-16s, continue to air-strike many areas in the ‘recently-evacuated’ Gaza Strip, in which several Palestinians have been killed, dozens others wounded, severe damages inflicted to buildings and a great deal of panic caused to men, women and children. “Suddenly, at 2:30am, in the early hours of Saturday 24, 2005, I woke up suddenly from my sleep, finding my three little kids, Ghadir (9), Rewan (6) and Fadi (4) , crying fearfully in my room, calling “Dad, Dad”.