Israeli TV report helps Palestinian baby, mother reunite after 6 months

When the mother wanted to return to Israel to claim her, she could not get permission to enter the country.

May 31, 2019 05:13
1 minute read.
Baby and mother from Gaza Strip are reunited in Israel.

Baby and mother from Gaza Strip are reunited in Israel.. (photo credit: screenshot)


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A story by Israel’s Channel 13 news has helped a Palestinian baby and her mother reunite and return together to the Gaza Strip.

The story began in January 2019, when a Gaza resident, pregnant with triplets, arrived at the Makassed Hospital in East Jerusalem for an emergency delivery, according to the exclusive report published Friday by Channel 13. The mother gave birth to all three babies, but two days later, two of them died.
Mom returned to Gaza to bury her babies, leaving a third child, Sha’ad, alone in the hospital for further treatment.

Then, when the mother wanted to return to Israel to claim her, she could not get permission to enter the country.

A nurse at the hospital told Channel 13 that while other babies eat and sleep, Sha’ad would stay awake.

“She needed someone to talk to and spend time with, she needed her mother,” the nurse said.

The hospital’s director of human resources, Issa Elian, said that normally a baby can stay at the hospital for treatment for up to two months. This child was treated for six months.

Off and on throughout those six months, Sha’ad’s condition improved and then deteriorated. The hospital turned repeatedly to the Palestinian Authority to file a request to the Coordinator of Military Activities in the Territories (COGAT), which could allow the mother or father to enter Israel and reunite with their daughter. 

"We tried again and again, and they refused," Elian told Channel 13.

The worried family would monitor their daughter via video chat on the small screen of a private cellular phone. 

Then, Channel 13 broke the story on Tuesday. By Thursday, the family was reunited.

Mom and baby just met for the first time in six months at the hospital. From there, they returned home to Gaza.

Watch the video (in Hebrew).

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