Bombing the Disabled: Palestine Chronicle Visits the Nabhan Family in Gaza

The Palestine Chronicle visited the Nabhan family in Gaza. (Photo: Mahmoud Ajjour, The Palestine Chronicle)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

“I tried to explain that there were disabled people in the house who can only move using wheelchairs, but to no avail,” the woman said. The missiles fell anyway.

When an Israeli missile hit the Nabhan family’s home in the northern Gaza Strip, just a few hours before the ceasefire agreement on Saturday, May 13, no one was killed.

However, the 45 members of the extended family, which includes five disabled people, became homeless.

All their belongings, such as wheelchairs, medicine, specially-modified beds and toilet equipment were buried under the rubble. 

The Palestine Chronicle correspondents in Gaza returned to the scene of the destroyed house, to speak with Hajja Nabhan, the sole breadwinner of the family.

She explained to us that the five disabled members of the family suffer from muscular atrophy and spasms, while three require wheelchairs.

We asked her about the events that preceded the bombing of the house.

Hajja Nabhan told The Palestine Chronicle that she received a message telling her that an Israeli airstrike will be targeting their home. “They asked me to leave the house immediately, but we were not ready,” she said. 

“I tried to explain that there were disabled people in the house who can only move using wheelchairs, but to no avail,” she added.

“I ran out of the house in a panic calling on my neighbors to help me evacuate my five disabled sons and daughters.” 

The neighbors immediately came to the rescue and were able to carry her children out of the house. Just a few moments later, an Israeli airstrike destroyed the building, reducing it to rubble.

“I passed out for a few minutes, and when I woke up, I asked if all of my children were safe,” Hajja Nabhan said, adding,

“I knew that my house had been demolished but at that moment, I was only relieved that all my children were alive.”

One of the children, Haneen, is 16 years old. She suffers from a chronic illness and serious mobility issues.

Haneen described the horrific moment of the bombing. “The house exploded, and we got out of it. Our wheelchairs, our medicines, and our clothes were left inside. We have lost everything, we have nothing left”, she told The Palestine Chronicle.

The other family members with disabilities are 3, 18, 29, and 38 years old.

One of the relatives joined the conversation. He said that “the loss of the Nabhan house caused a deterioration in the psychological state of the eldest brother, who became very tense, always screaming and sometimes crying uncontrollably.”

According to statistics published by the Gaza government media office, 31 homes were completely destroyed during the latest Israeli war on besieged Gaza. Many others were seriously or partially damaged.

(All Photos: Mahmoud Ajjour, The Palestine Chronicle)

(The Palestine Chronicle is a registered 501(c)3 organization, thus, all donations are tax deductible.)
Our Vision For Liberation: Engaged Palestinian Leaders & Intellectuals Speak Out