Al Jazeera journalist reporting from Gaza learns that family died in Israeli air strike
Al Jazeera’s bureau chief in the Gaza Strip was helping to broadcast live images from the besieged territory when he was told his own wife, son and daughter had been killed by an Israeli air strike.
Wael al-Dahdouh’s family were hit while sheltering in a refugee camp in an area where the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) had encouraged people to go to stay safe, according to the Qatar-based satellite channel.
Al Jazeera later reported that his grandson had died as well.
Moments after he was told of their deaths, the network switched to footage of Mr Dahdouh entering the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir el-Balah, where he looked at the body of his dead son.
Al Jazeera’s news anchor later broke down on air while informing viewers of what had happened to his family. He was still wearing his protective press vest from that day’s work.
Mr Dahdouh told the channel: “What happened is clear. This is a series of targeted attacks on children, women and civilians. I was just reporting from Yarmouk about such an attack, and the Israeli raids have targeted many areas, including Nuseirat.
“We had our doubts that the Israeli occupation would not let these people go without punishing them. And sadly, that is what happened. This is the ‘safe’ area that the occupation army spoke of.”
Mr Dahdouh was later on Thursday filmed attending the funeral of his relatives.
The 53-year-old journalist is well known within the Arab world and praised in his native Gaza for telling people’s stories of suffering and hardship to the outside world.
His family were among the more than one million Gaza residents displaced by the war, which is now in its 19th day, and were staying in a house in Nuseirat when the strike hit, the network said.
The territory’s Hamas-controlled health ministry has said Israeli artillery and air strikes have killed more than 6,500 Palestinians since Israel began heavy bombardment following the Oct 7 attacks.
Israel has threatened to shut down Al Jazeera, accusing the channel of pro-Hamas incitement.
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