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8 Jan, 2009 03:29

The price of living in Gaza

While politicians and diplomats continue to call the shots in the Gaza conflict, it’s ordinary people who suffer – from fear, deprivation and grief.

Journalists are not being allowed into Gaza, but RT's sister Arabic news channel Russiya Al Yaum is there.

According to their report, four people died when Beit-Lahia, a town north of Gaza City, was shelled recently. During a short period of calm which lasted for three hours, numerous casualties were found. Rescuers took them to the northern part of Gaza. Bodies were also found in the eastern part of Gaza. Entire families were found dead under the ruins of houses. Kassam and Grad rockets were fired at Israeli territory in response, according to Russiya Al Yaum.

Meanwhile, Palestinian citizens at the border with Egypt are in a deadlock, the report says:

“They have nowhere to go after receiving letters urging them to leave this territory and warning of upcoming shelling. More than 15% of Rafah City has been razed to the ground. There isn’t a single house left near the border. We know that more than 1,700 houses have been destroyed there as a result of this intifada. The question is what happens to those who live in the centre of Rafah City and where they will go when their houses are destroyed”.

People are trying to escape the shelling to save their lives. “But we also met people who’d prefer to die under the ruins of their own homes,” RT’s sister channel correspondent Saed Suerki said. “We talked to the elderly, children and women. They all said if death is even happening in schools and mosques, then where is there to find rescue? They’d prefer to die in their homes. They said it would be more honourable for them.”