Despite having a stable income, a good job and a comfortable life, Mohammed Hassan chose to leave Gaza, unable to cope with the never-ending military confrontation between israel and Hamas, and unwilling to put up with the constant dread for his family.
Mohammed Hassan, a 36-year-old Palestinian from Gaza whose real name cannot be revealed for security reasons, never thought he would need to pack his entire life into two bags – weighing 20 kg in total – and leave Gaza where he was born and raised.
But the constant existential threat and the instability forced him to take his entire family – a wife and three kids – and relocate to a place, where he won’t dread for the safety of his loved ones, Turkey.
Not Another Number
“Every time there is an escalation between israel and Hamas [which has controlled the Strip since 2007 – ed.], the Israel Defence Forces explode buildings in Gaza, killing and injuring people. I didn’t want to be a number, just another person who was killed during the bombardment,” he said referring to the recent round of tensions between Israel and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad that erupted following Israel’s targeted killing of the group’s high-profile commander.
Amid the confrontation, the Israeli army targeted the group’s military infrastructure – that’s often located in densely populated neighbourhoods – but ended up killing a family of eight civilians who were buried under the rubble of their home, destroyed by the shelling.