Rezq Ahmed, 10, from Al Mugragha, had his family house destroyed in the last war on Gaza in 2014. He is the oldest of three sisters and two brothers
We live in a tragic situation under the blockade where our water and electricity are cut off. We only get electricity for three hours a day, so I can’t watch TV, and when we want to study at night, we can’t. I mainly study in the afternoon and a little bit in the evening.
I like going to school because I receive education and see my friends, who live far from me. I also play there. My friends and I buy snacks from the school’s shop and sit together. I come to school to learn because if I learn, I can find a job. I hope I can become an engineer so we can build houses for all the people.
I hope the blockade will end and the environment remains clean and beautiful. What scares me the most is the shooting and the war. People become displaced and houses get razed to the ground. During the war, I was afraid of the shooting and of the Israelis. Whenever they would shoot, I would instantly get terrified.
The first time the shooting started in the last war was in Ramadan and we were having our breakfast meal. Our house got bombed at night and we remained huddled in one place. We woke up in the morning and found the Israelis had broken into our place. When they entered, we sought a car and went to perform prayers. We stayed away from our home for one month. When we returned home after the war, we found that the water tanks got destroyed and the third and fourth floors were demolished. So we stayed on the ground floor. After that, we removed the rocks on the upper floors and asked for construction workers to rebuild them. I clearly remember the rockets as they hit the houses. I used to watch that on TV.
When the war was going on, I would try to calm down my two siblings down, read stories to them and play with them. I would tell them that there was nothing serious; it was just a man who was launching fireworks. I am responsible for my siblings because I am the oldest. I took care of them and ensured they didn’t get injured or harmed.
When I would hear the sound of a plane I would think that our house would get bombed and razed. The street and other houses would get bombed, too. When I used to hear that sound, I would get scared and go to sit in a corner. I dream of the blockade on the Gaza strip ending and the Israelis not demolishing our homes just like during the war. I also dream of living in peace and in good health. I wish Palestine would be liberated from the occupation.
Photo: Ahmad Mashharawi/NRC
4 May, 2017