An Israeli Arab family which lost 21 of its members in last week’s alleged chemical weapons attack outside Damascus has urged the government to permit its surviving kin to receive refuge in Israel.
Twenty-one relatives of the Wakid family from Nazareth living near Damascus died in Wednesday’s purported chemical weapons attack, Israel Radio reported Monday.
Ahmed Wakid said he wants the injured to be treated in Israel, and implored the government to grant the parents of those who died entry to Israel. Wakid explained that the family is Palestinian and the parents simply want to die in the land of their birthplace.
Since February, well over 100 Syrian civilians injured in the civil war have been admitted to Israeli hospitals for treatment. Many less serious cases have been treated by Israeli medical teams at an IDF field hospital in the Golan Heights. Israel has said it offers the care as an act of humanitarian assistance, while endeavoring to stay out of the Syrian war, in which an estimated 100,000 people have been killed since March 2011.
The majority of Syrians brought into Israel have received treatment at either Safed’s Ziv Medical Center or the Western Galilee Medical center in Nahariya.
According to a CNN report published Sunday, 120 Syrians have so far been treated in Safed at a cost of approximately $3 million. The report, that was given access to some of those treated at the hospital, said that half of the beds in the intensive care ward are now taken up by wounded Syrians.
Although the treatment of Syrians in Israel has been widely reported, the IDF refuses to release details on exactly how the wounded are brought into the country, or how they are then returned to Syria after their treatment.