Gazan siblings mourn for father killed in Israeli airstrikes

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Siblings in Gaza are mourning for their father who was killed in an Israeli air strike during the recent onslaught.

A video of the father, Ahmed al-Mansi, went viral on social media in which he is seen trying to comfort his daughters as Israel attacked the blockaded Gaza Strip on May 12.


Two days later, an Israeli air strike killed him leaving his three children orphaned.

Sarah, the eldest child, said their mother tried to calm her and her frightened siblings during the recent Israeli air raids after her father died.

She said that they missed their father very much, voicing the pain of hundreds of Palestinian children who have been orphaned in the past decades due to Israeli violence.


Nesma said that two days before he died, her husband sent them to her mother's house -- worrying for their safety.

"He was our life and now he is gone. We are still trying to come to terms with the loss."

Recalling that Ahmed was a devoted husband and father, she said it will be difficult to raise three children all alone.

"I cannot imagine how I will raise three children all alone. And a fourth child is on the way, I'm pregnant."

An Egyptian-brokered cease-fire between Palestinian resistance groups and Israel took effect last week, putting an end to 11 days of the worst cycle of fighting in years.

Since April 13, clashes erupted across the occupied territories because of Israeli attacks and restrictions on Palestinians in East Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and an Israeli court's decision to evict 12 Palestinian families from their homes in favor of Israeli settlers.

Tensions moved to Gaza on May 10, leading to a military confrontation between Israeli forces and Palestinian resistance groups where Israeli warplanes caused an unprecedented scale of destruction in the occupied territory.

At least 254 Palestinians were killed, including 66 children and 39 women, and more than 1,900 others injured in Israeli air strikes on Gaza, according to Palestinian medics. At least 31 Palestinians were also killed in Israeli attacks in the occupied West Bank.

Thirteen Israelis were killed by Palestinian rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.

Jerusalem remains at the heart of the Israel-Palestine conflict, with Palestinians hoping East Jerusalem, now occupied by Israel, might eventually serve as capital of a future Palestinian state.

Al-Aqsa Mosque is the world's third-holiest site for Muslims. Jews call the area the "Temple Mount," claiming it was the site of two Jewish temples in ancient times.

Since 2003, Israel has allowed settlers into the compound almost on a daily basis.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem, where Al-Aqsa is located, during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. It annexed the entire city in 1980, in a move never recognized by the international community.