THE families of Spanish citizens trapped in Gaza amid an Israeli blitz have blasted their government for doing nothing while citizens from ‘smaller’ countries manage to escape.
Madrid and the Spanish Consul in Israel have failed to provide clear explanations for why no Spanish names have appeared on evacuation lists through the Rafah border crossing to Egypt.
Negotiated evacuation lists have seen around 300 individuals with foreign passports leaving Gaza over the past week.
They include citizens from the ‘less influential’ countries of Indonesia, the Philippines, Ukraine, Moldova, Romania, Hungary and Croatia.
There are estimated to be 170 to 190 Spanish citizens currently trapped in Gaza, according to the Spanish Ministry of Defence – almost half of them children.
“We don’t understand why smaller countries are managing to evacuate dozens of their citizens,” Nisrin Krayen Domínguez told El Diario.
Nisrin has his father, two brothers, and three nephews trapped in Gaza under constant Israeli airstrikes.
“We all call the Spanish consul in Israel daily, but we are only told to wait without further explanations,” he added.
His brother and Spanish citizen Mohammed Krayem Domínguez, had the home he lived in with his wife and children aged six and one bombed out by Israeli arms, Nisrin said.
They have since been sleeping on the floor in a school, living in dire conditions and facing food shortages.
Tamer Handam, a Spanish doctor of Palestinian origin based in Valencia, said: “We ask the Spanish government to do everything in its power.
“Citizens from relatively less influential countries are being evacuated. They tell us to wait and have patience as if they weren’t under constant bombardment and at risk of imminent death.”
The Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs, José Manuel Albares, said that evacuating Spanish citizens from Gaza is ‘particularly complex.’
However, he has assured that all Spanish nationals in Gaza have been identified and that evacuation efforts will proceed as soon as possible.