The aftermath of one of the attacks on the Dalloul factory (Photo: Motasem Dalloul)
Four times. That’s how many occasions Abu Haroun Dalloul has witnessed his dairy factory in the Gaza Strip pulverized by Israeli bombs. The latest attack came last night as part of a wave of Israeli air raids on Gaza over the weekend that injured 13 Palestinians and killed two.
Factory owner Abu Haroun Dalloul told Ma'an the bombing was the fourth time his factory has been targeted in recent years. The facility was previously destroyed in Israel's war on Gaza in January 2009.
He called on Arab and Islamic nations, as well as the European Union, to form a committee to prove his factory does not store weapons.
The business sustained an estimated loss of $300,000 after Sunday's strike, Dalloul said, noting he had just purchased a new processor at a cost of $80,000.
"We call on the whole world to protect us. My factory makes food and yogurt. Why is it being bombed like this?" he said.
"If it stored or manufactured weapons, it would not have been placed in a residential neighborhood, where most of the houses nearby belong to my relatives," he continued.
One neighbor, Um Basem al-Shanshiri, said Sunday's bombing caused panic and terror amongst the sleeping children in the area.
The continued attacks on the dairy factory bring to mind Israel’s destruction of a flour mill and chicken farm in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead. The United Nations Goldstone report found that “as a result of its actions to destroy food and water supplies and infrastructure, Israel” violated a number of human rights treaties.
The bombings that eventually damaged the Dalloul factory started on Friday, after an Israeli soldier was killed by a Palestinian fighter on the Gaza-Israel border. Gaza remains under Israeli occupation and a blockade that has crippled the Strip’s economy.
The Dalloul factory was not the only business that suffered damage from the latest Israeli attacks. According to the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights, an organization based in Gaza, “a poultry and cattle farm, a water well, a carpentry shop, and a storeroom were also damaged.” Seven children have also been injured as a result of the latest raids.
The Israeli Air Force has nothing to say about the dairy factory they destroyed. The Israel Defense Forces website reports that they “targeted a weapon manufacturing facility and a terror tunnel in the northern Gaza Strip. Direct hits were identified.”