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“Thank God, I’m Brazilian”, says returnee who lost 45 family members in the war between Israel and Hamas

Driver Ahmed Alajrami, 43 years old, landed this Wednesday (15) at Guarulhos Airport. He is one of 22 repatriates who will be sent to live in a shelter in the interior of São Paulo. In the luggage, little clothes and the pain of having lost 45 family members in the war.

“Thank God I’m Brazilian,” he told CNN .

Alajrami obtained Brazilian citizenship after living between 2014 and 2019 in Cuiabá, where he worked as an Uber driver.

In 2020, he went to live in Toulouse, France, where his wife and two children, aged 14 and 16, still live. There he worked transporting luggage carts. He returned to the Gaza Strip to see his family.

When war broke out, Alajrami turned to the Brazilian Representation to Palestine. Along with other Brazilians, he was sheltered in Rafah until he received authorization to leave Gaza via the border with Egypt.

“I lost 45 people”

Alajrami’s family lived in Jabalia, a refugee camp attacked by Israel in response to the Hamas attack on October 7.

“I lost everything. Our house was destroyed. I lost 45 people in my family, including two brothers, women and children. Today I lost two friends,” he told CNN during a conversation this Tuesday (14), still at the Brasília Air Base, where he spent two nights before embarking for São Paulo.

Alajarami says that his father and his brothers – four children – are sheltering in a school in Deir al-Balah, in southern Gaza. On his cell phone, he shows photos of family members lying on the floor.

“My family almost died, my friends died. Is very sad. I’m 43 years old and it feels like my life is over too. My head is bad, I can’t stay calm. I wanted my remaining family to be Brazilian too,” she said.

Source: CNN Brasil

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