VIDEO - Rockets claim heavy price: Three residents of the village of Arab al-Aramshe, 60-year-old Fadia Jumaa and her two daughters Samira, 31, and Sultana, 33, were killed Saturday afternoon after being directly hit by a rocket. The village is located very close to the Lebanon border, east of Shlomi.
Rahamim Sides, a Magen David Adom worker, recounted the rescue efforts: "We didn’t have much to do there. We just determined the death. It was a mother and her two daughters who were sitting in the yard."
Following the incident, a mood of heavy mourning was felt in the village, which houses 250 families, about 1,500 residents. Most of the residents serve in the security forces and others earn a living from office and agricultural work.
A loud blast sound was heard in the center of the village at around 4 p.m., and it quickly turned out that a Katyusha rocket hit a yard of a house, causing the death of the three women who were sitting in the yard near a fortified structure.
The community center manager, Mazaal Muhammad, told Ynet: "Unfortunately, there is barely any warning time before Katyushas or mortar shells land here due to our proximity to the border with Lebanon. When we heard the blast we identified its origin, and when we arrived we saw the great horror. The mother and her two daughters were lying side by side bleeding, and the MDA crews that arrived at the place had nothing left to do but to determine their death."
Family members informed of deadly attack (Photo: Niv Calderon)
Every house in the village today has a fortified area, a secure room or a nearby shelter, but in recent days, due to the prolonged fighting and the great difficulty to stay in the fortified areas most of the day, residents tend to go out to the houses' balconies, take a breath of fresh air and stay outside the closed structures for several hours, with the sounds of IDF artillery causing them to feel relatively safe.
The barrage directly hit an electricity wire, which cut off the electricity supply to all houses and nearby areas. Employees of the Israel Electric Corporation, assisted by security forces, were working to deal with the malfunctions and restore the electricity supply.
Neighbors and family members gathered in the yard and began collecting any piece of memory – shoes, a towel, a blood-stained pillow.
120 rockets within 90 minutes
A heavy rocket barrage was fired at the entire north of Israel, hitting Kiryat Shmona, Tiberias, Nahariya, Shlomi, Ma'alot and Akko. Within 90 minutes – between 4 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. – 120 rockets landed in northern communities. About 170 rockets landed in the north since the morning hours.
In Kiryat Shmona, two people were lightly hurt by shrapnel. One of the rockets directly hit a building in one of the communities near Nahariya. The rest of the rockets landed in open areas. There were no reports of injuries.
In the Shlomi area, rockets started a number of fires. The sirens in these communities, and next to them, have been activated once and again since the afternoon hours.
In Ma'alot, one of the rockets directly hit a building and another one hit a local sports facility. Another two rockets landed in open areas next to villages in the Ma'alot area. There were no reports of injuries.
A siren was also heard in Rosh Pina, Hatzor Haglilit, Safed, and the entire Galilee area. Sirens were also activated in Haifa, the surrounding areas and Beit Shean, but there were no reports of rockets landing in there.
Rocket in Kiryat Shmona, Saturday (Photo: Sharon Dahan)
This was the second barrage fired at northern communities Saturday. Earlier, at around 8:15 a.m., about 11 rockets fell in Kiryat Yam, Kiryat Motzkin, and Kiryat Bialik. An 85-year-old woman from Kiryat Ata was brought to the Rambam Medical Center in Haifa after going into cardiac arrest during a an air raid siren.
Upon arrival at the hospital, she was pronounced dead. Her neighbors said that she ran to the shelter during the siren, but when she made her way back to her apartment her heart stopped.
Additionally, six people were lightly wounded by shrapnel in Kiryat Yam, and about another people went into shock. The injured were evacuated to the Carmel Medical Center and Bnei Zion Medical Center in Haifa.
Cars damaged by rockets in Krayot area (Photo: Amir)
Yoav Naveh, a Maged David Adom paramedic who arrived at the house in which the elderly woman collapsed, said: "We found her unconscious. During the evacuation to Rambam we tried to revive her. Her death was pronounced at the hospital. We estimate that the background of her collapse is a heart attack caused by stress or by the strain of going up from the shelter. Family members at first didn't understand what was happening. They thought she had merely fainted. She was never a sick woman and had no special health problems."
In Kiryat Yam, four rockets fell, one of them hitting a house, and another landing in someone's backyard, causing damage to the building and cars around.
Deputy Manager of the Carmel region of Magen David Adom, Meir Vanish, said that "the destruction in the area of the rocket hit is especially large."
In the Krayot, there were disruption in the electricity supply caused by rockets.
Ahiya Raved and Meital Yasur-Beit Or contributed to the report