Hanadi Gamal Saed El Jamara, 38, says sleep is all that can distract her children from the aching hunger gnawing at their bellies.
These days, the mother-of-seven finds herself begging for food on the mud-caked streets of Rafah, in southern Gaza.
She tries to feed her kids at least once a day, she says, while tending to her husband, a cancer and diabetes patient.
“They are weak now, they always have diarrhea, their faces are yellow,” El Jamara, whose family was displaced from northern Gaza, told CNN on January 9. “My 17-year-old daughter tells me she feels dizziness, my husband is not eating.”
As Gaza spirals toward full-scale famine, displaced civilians and health workers told CNN they go hungry so their children can eat what little is available. If Palestinians find water, it is likely undrinkable. When relief trucks trickle into the strip, people clamber over each other to grab aid. Children living on the streets, after being forced from their homes by Israel’s bombardment, cry and fight over stale bread. Others reportedly walk for hours in the cold searching for food, risking exposure to Israeli strikes.
Even before the war, two out of three people in Gaza relied on food support, Arif Husain, the chief economist at the World Food Programme (WFP), told CNN. Palestinians have lived through 17 years of partial blockade imposed by Israel and Egypt. [Continue reading…]