KFAR KILA, Lebanon: A family of five narrowly escaped the Israeli attack on south Lebanon Friday, when two of the nine mortar bombs struck their house just seconds after they left.
“We had just stepped out of the house and then I heard a large explosion,” Ali Sheet told The Daily Star Saturday, standing outside his damaged home in Awidah, 20 kilometers from Kfar Kila.
One of the shells hit the living room, while the other landed in the children’s bedroom. A day later, sheets of paper, glass and books were seen scattered across the room.
A Spanish contingent with the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon arrived at Sheet’s home to inspect the damage and take photos in an attempt to document the source of fire using a handheld GPS system.
A Lebanese Army unit also inspected Sheet’s house and collected shrapnel from the mortar bombs.
Carrying a gas canister damaged by the explosion, Sheet addressed the peacekeepers, saying, “Can you imagine if this canister exploded while my kids were inside?”
“Yesterday, they were fighting over the resistance,” Sheet said, referring to the dispute between rival political parties over the wording of the ministerial policy statement in regards to Lebanon’s right to resist Israeli aggression.
“Let this be a message: If it weren’t for the resistance and people of the south, we would never be living on our land,” he said as his 6-year-old son, Hasan, carried his broken bicycle out of the house
Israeli forces fired several mortar shells late Friday, including nine that fell on Bastra farms and Helta in Kfar Kila, in retaliation for an explosion that targeted an Israeli military patrol near the border with Lebanon.
The Israeli army said it shelled a Hezbollah position in response to the bomb attack, which was later claimed by the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria.
Awidah Sheikh Sayyed Abbas Fadlallah, who arrived at Sheet’s home to check on the family, said that the Lebanese should unite against Israel.
“Take a look behind me,” Fadlallah said, pointing to the Israeli settlements across the border. “We should come together in the face of our enemies.