GAZA CITY – Huddling in their rooms, members of Al-Dalou family were praying to God that they would survive deadly Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip.
But all of a sudden, a missile struck their three-storey building in central Gaza, burying the whole family under rubble.
"I don't know what to say,” Muhammed Abu Jme’ian, a neighbor of Al-Dalou family, told OnIslam.net on Monday, November 19.
“What happened is bigger than all the words in the world.
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“I am still too shocked and too distraught to tell you what happened.”
Nine members of Al-Dalou family were killed when an Israeli war plane attacked their three-storey building in the Nasr neighborhood in central Gaza.
Among those killed were Muhammad Dalou, his wife and four children, aged between two and seven and three girls. Two neighbors also died in the attack.
"Our neighbors, their sons and daughters and grandsons and granddaughters were all murdered yesterday by the state which claims to be the only civilized and democratic state in the Middle East,” Muhammed said.
“I hope and pray they will be accepted by God as martyrs.
“They lived as poor people and they died unjustly,” Muhammed said, fighting back his tears.
Israel said Monday it could not provide explanations for the killings, saying it would investigate the attack.
The Israeli newspapers Haaretz and Maariv said the Israeli army had fired at the wrong house.
But Israel's top-selling daily, Yedioth Ahronoth, reported the al-Dalou home was indeed the target and that it housed a Hamas member.
"He wasn't politically affiliated. They were just a normal family,” Shehda Dalou, a relative, told The Daily Telegraph.
“They said the kids had been watching TV when the bomb hit."
At least 96 Palestinians have been killed and hundreds injured in six days of deadly Israeli attacks on Gaza.
Israel says the onslaught aims to stop rocket fire from Gaza into the Jewish state.
The Israeli offensive in Gaza has so far drawn Western support for what US and European leaders have called its right to self-defense, but there was also a growing number of appeals from them to seek an end to the hostilities.
Israel killed more than 1,400 Palestinians and injured thousands in a three-week offensive in Gaza in 2008.
Gazans rejected Israeli claims that the house of Al-Dalou’s family was harboring a Hamas member.
“Even if one member of the family worked for the resistance, would that justify executing the entire family of 11 or 12 people,” Muhammed asked.
“If another country occupied your country and murdered your family, wouldn't you resist?"
Israel occupied the West Bank, Al-Quds and Gaza, Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula and Syria’s Golan Heights in the 1967 Middle East war.
Israel returned the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt after signing a peace accord in 1997.
Israel evacuated Gaza in 2005, but maintained a crippling siege on the enclave since Hamas was voted to power in 2006.
Peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians collapsed last year over Israel’s refusal to halt settlement building in the occupied West Bank.
"If the Palestinian resistance against the Israeli colonizers is morally wrong, then European resistance against the Nazis was also wrong,” Muhammed said.“As far we are concerned, there is absolutely no difference between German Nazis and Judeo-Nazis. They are two sides of the same coin.”
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