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Sydney

Dozens of Palestinians evacuated from Gaza arrive at Sydney airport after federal government issues temporary visas

After 40 days trapped in Gaza’s oldest church, four Palestinians from the Taraji family have finally been safely taken to Sydney.

It’s a bittersweet moment for 86-year-old Laila Al-Kubti, her two daughters Minerva and Lina, and her six-year-old grandson Nicholas.

On Friday night, when Minerva was reunited with her Australian sister Maha, she expressed fears she might never see her homeland again.

“I’m worried about the people left there. Right now I’m worried about my brother and his wife and all the brothers who are still there,” she said.

The family was among dozens of Palestinians arriving at Sydney Airport as part of the war. The Australian government has issued 860 visas to date. For those who fled the Israel-Gaza war.

Minerva (far left) said she was worried about other family members still in Gaza.(ABC News: Nabil Al Nashar)

The visa is valid for up to 12 months, but there are currently no plans to extend it.

The foursome took refuge at the Greek Orthodox church of St. Porphyrius in Gaza City to escape Israeli airstrikes.

However, on October 19, the building was bombed, killing nearly 20 people.

Minerva described the situation as “genocide.”

“They are repeating the Nakba of 1948. This is a forced expulsion for us,” she said.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-11-25/palestinians-fleeing-gaza-arrive-in-sydney/103149208 Dozens of Palestinians evacuated from Gaza arrive at Sydney airport after federal government issues temporary visas

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