"Nobody knows where the next rocket will land"

Nearly 4,000 kilometers away from the conflict zone in Gaza, the Eltoum/Altoom family is struggling to stay in touch with their loved ones. In Gaza, the electricity has been cut off and the gasoline for the generator is running out. "We are worried," says Amna Altoom.

"All we can do is talk about the situation," says Hisham Eltoum, pictured here with his daughter, Amna Altoom.

"All we can do is talk about the situation," says Hisham Eltoum, pictured here with his daughter, Amna Altoom.

Foto: Johanna Sandgren

Kåge2023-10-18 12:30

The Palestinian Eltoum/Altoom family lives in Kåge. When Norran first met father and daughter Hisham Eltoum and Amna Altoom last Friday, they hadn't been able to contact their relatives in Gaza for several days.

–There is no internet, and we can't call them, says Hisham.

– We know nothing about how they are doing, adds Amna.

Amna Altoom explains that they feel concern for the family located in Gaza. Her father Hisham Eltoum sits to her right.

Her grandmother is in Gaza with many other family members, and Hisham has his father and sister there, among others.

Where their relatives are located, there is poor phone reception, and the electricity in the area has been cut off.

On Saturday, October 7, Hamas, designated as a terrorist organization by, among others, the EU, launched attacks on Israel on multiple fronts. Rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip, and there was an already notorious attack on a festival.

Israel responded with airstrikes and a blockade around the Gaza Strip. The blockade has resulted in the cessation of the import of electricity, food, and many other things.

Now, Israel is at war with Hamas, and on both sides of the conflict, the civilian population is suffering from the violence.

Hamas is considered a terrorist organization by several countries and international organizations, including the United States, Israel, the European Union, and others.

What did your family say before the electricity was cut off?

– They have been through a lot and now they are just waiting. What will happen now? There is bombing almost everywhere, says Amna.

She says it's hard to describe the emotions of what's happening in Gaza.

– It's such a small area. Where are they going to go? If you don't have a home, should you go to your neighbor's? They will die soon too, says Amna.

Her grandmother's side of the family has a gasoline-powered generator at home that Hisham's side of the family sometimes uses.

– It's only used when it's really needed. They're running out of gas, so they don't wash or anything; they just charge their phones for a little while. It's a big family and a small generator, so not everyone can charge, says Amna.

Amna Altoom has several pieces of jewelry representing Palestine.

On Monday, Norran contacted the Eltoum/Altoom family again. Over the weekend, they were able to reach Hisham's sister by phone. The call lasted two minutes before the line was disconnected.

– We didn't hear much, but hearing her voice was better than nothing, said Amna.

– She's fine, but it's a very difficult situation. There are no safe places and she is afraid. People are ready to die at any moment because no one knows where the next rocket will land, says Hisham.

Are you or do you know someone who is Palestinian or Israeli? Please contact Norran at tipsa@norran.se.

"All we can do is talk about the situation," says Hisham Eltoum, pictured here with his daughter, Amna Altoom.