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Child found alive 4 days after family members killed in Gaza

Aug. 5, 2014 11:00 P.M. (Updated: Aug. 7, 2014 9:42 A.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Family relatives of four-year-old Yamin Abu Jabir found him alive in hospital after they spent four days looking for his dead body with the belief that he was killed along with the rest of his family.

The relatives were killed by an Israeli airstrike at their home in al-Bureij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip.

Muhammad Jabir Abu, a cousin of Yamin’s father, said he believed that the child was dead under the rubble, but he was confused as bulldozers failed to find the child’s body after digging in the rubble for four days.

Moving from one hospital to another across the Gaza Strip, relatives finally found Yamin on the fifth day at Shifa Hospital in Gaza City. His face was wrapped with a white cloth and his hand was set in plaster, but fortunately a relative approached him and recognized him.

Muhammad highlighted that his cousin’s family were gathered on Tuesday, the second day of the Eid al-Fitr holiday, in an attempt to create a positive atmosphere which could soften the tension and fear caused by the ongoing Israeli airstrikes everywhere in the coastal enclave.

However, he added, the good moments were interrupted by an Israeli missile which killed 22 members of the family leaving four-year-old Yamin alone as he turned out to be the only survivor.

Neighbors and ambulance service officers who hurried to evacuate the victims took Yamin to the Al-Aqsa Martys Hospital in Deir al-Balah where he was admitted to an intensive care unit.

He was then transferred to Shifa Hospital in Gaza City by a young volunteer Muhammad Abu Zeid who escorted him and remained attached to him hoping that some relative would recognize him.

“When Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital was bombarded, and chaos prevailed amongst medical staffs, I grabbed the child on my own and took him to Shifa Hospital,” he said.

Abu Zeid highlighted that medics wrote the word “unidentified” on Yamin’s file because nobody came to ask about him.

The Israeli military offensive on Gaza has claimed the lives of about 400 children in addition to thousands who were injured.

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