Only Survivor in Her Family – Palestine Chronicle Visits Wounded Gaza Child, Sham

Sham al-Tawil, 7, is the only survivor of her family. (Photo: Mahmoud Ajjour, The Palestine Chronicle)

By Mahmoud Ajjour – Gaza

The Palestine Chronicle visited Sham al-Tawil, 7, whose house was blown up by the Israeli military on November 23. 

“They have killed my father,” the little girl cries as she rubs the burns on her face, with a broken arm. 

“No, stop, don’t touch the burns on your face,” her aunt says.  

The girl, again, cries for her dead parents. 

“What did we say? We can only say from Allah we came and to Allah we return,” the aunt comforts the little girl. 

The girl is Sham al-Tawil, a first-grader from the Nuseirat refugee camp in central Gaza.

The Palestine Chronicle visited Sham, whose house was blown up by the Israeli military on November 23. 

The scene around Sham was a perfect reflection of the genocide currently being endured by Gaza’s civilian population.

Many children were mutilated. Some were dying. Wounded mothers taking care of wounded children. Very few bed covers. Very little medicine. 

We spoke with Sham’s aunt, to record the event that led to Sham’s severe wounds.

This is what she said.

‘Her Name is Sham’

“They targeted our house on Thursday, November 23, one day before the ceasefire. My brother was martyred, along with his wife and his daughter, and my sister was also martyred.

“We were asleep. We all woke up at the sound of the explosion. Everybody in the house was either killed or injured. Four people were martyred. 

“What have we done to deserve this? 

“We are from the Nuseirat area. Our house is made of three stories. 

“Sham is only seven years old, she is the only one who survived from her family. Her mother, her father, and her sister were killed. I am her aunt. 

“Most of our injuries are of traumas to the head, broken bones and severe burns. 

“Thanks to God for everything. 

“I am the one who is now looking after her, along with her grandparents who survived. 

“She is only seven years old, she is in the first grade.

“Her name is Sham Taher al-Tawil. 

“Thanks to God for everything.”

(All Photos: Mahmoud Ajjour, The Palestine Chronicle)

– Mahmoud Ajjour is a Gaza-based photojournalist. He is the Palestine Chronicle’s correspondent in the Gaza Strip.

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