GAZA CITY: In a hospital bed at Shifa Hospital, Sabah Abdul Halim looks forlorn and every few minutes, tears flow.
“Sabar, sabar, sabar (patience, patience, patience),” she mutters to herself repeatedly.
Hers was a family of eight and now there are only three left. Her husband, one-year-old baby girl and three sons, aged eight, 10, and 14, are dead due to bomb attacks at their home.
On Dec 27 when the family was at home in Beit Lahiya, a town close to the Israeli border, an Israeli F-16 unleashed a white phosphorous bomb.
“I felt a lot of pain and my whole body was very hot. What is this weapon they used on us? This kind of weapon can’t be used against people. It is haram (prohibited). They destroyed my home. Where will I go?” cried Sabah, whose flesh at the back of her neck and legs had been eaten by the white phosphorous.
In another hospital bed, 16-year-old Abdullah Nabil Sleem, who had dreams of becoming a doctor, lies in a coma.
His father Nabil, who has kept vigil by his bedside with his wife Mona, said that five days ago the F-16s attacked his neighbour’s house and the wall fell on him, causing Abdullah to suffer severe burns and a brain haemorrhage.
In some places, houses or apartments had been completely demolished and there were also horrific accounts of Israeli soldiers’ brutality.
In one account, some soldiers made a man crawl and then shot both his hands and legs and left him to bleed to death.
There were also claims that soldiers helped themselves to money and jewellery after the people fled their homes.
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