Israeli Hospital Determined to Restore Syrian Child’s Sight

 

The 12 yr-old boy is but one Syrian civil war victims of ten patients currently being treated at the Israeli hospital. He lost his sight from regime shelling. Another victim says, ‘We were taught that Israel is the enemy.’

By Reuters

 

Israeli medics were checking last week a 12-year-old Syrian boy who was brought to Ziv Medical Center in Tzfat (Safed), northern Israel.

An injured Syrian girl being treated at Israel’s Ziv Medical Center – Reuters

The hospital said that the boy was severely wounded, losing the sight in both eyes and suffering injuries to his arm and leg, when a shell exploded near his home in the outskirts of Damascus. After undergoing basic medical treatment in Lebanon, his brother took him by donkey across the border to an Israeli military post, where soldiers took him to hospital in Safed.

The spokesperson said the boy was one of ten Syrians currently being treated at the hospital, and one of several hundred since February 2013.

The social worker of the orthopaedic unit at Ziv medical center, Faris, said that all of the Syrian patients who crossed to Israel for treatment prefer to go back home after they recover.

“I am in charge of the Syrian file in the hospital. Up until today, we have had 362 injured Syrians. We treat them socially, psychologically, and for whatever the Syrian injured need. Today we are treating a 12-year-old child who was injured from a bomb that hit near his house. The child has lost his vision, part of his hand – a broken hand and a broken leg,” Faris said.

The head of ophthalmology at Ziv Center, Yosef Pikel, said that they try to make the child’s stay as pleasant as possible.

“Well, he’s in a very bad position, he lost his right eye, he was primary operated in Beirut and then he came to us to a retinal surgery which was quite difficult and we…We hope that he has some chance of vision but we are not sure of that because the gravity of the injury was very bad,” Pikel said.

Recently Israel’s frontier with Syria, where rebels have kidnapped UN peacekeepers, has become a magnet for Islamist activity and Israel may itself now be a target, an Israeli official warned on September 2.

But while Israel may be growing alarmed, it is not clear that the Jewish state is a strategic priority for the Nusra Front or other radical Sunni Muslim groups.

A Syrian youth who also being treated in Israel said anonymously that he has been helping the child and considers him as a brother.

“I help him to eat and to drink water and juice. Whatever he asks me to help him with I do for him,” the youth said.

The youth said that the Syrian regime used to teach them that Israel is an enemy, but now he believes that the regime is the enemy and Israel is a friend.

“I hope that God will help us and all the people will go back to their homes and this war will stop. That is enough, it has been four years of destruction and killing,” he added.

After three years of fighting, opposition forces control patches of territory to the west and south of Damascus, including a portion of the 375-km (225-mile) border with Jordan.

The frontier between Israel and Syria has been administered by the United Nations since 1974, a year after the last war between them. It consists of an area of separation, a narrow strip of land running about 70 km (45 miles) from Mount Hermon on the Lebanese border to the Yarmouk River with Jordan.

About 1,200 soldiers are involved in monitoring the separation zone, in what has been for most of the past 40 years one of the world’s quietest peacekeeping missions. That changed with the uprising against Assad, and the area is now precarious.

Arutz Sheva Staff contributed to this report.

View original Arutz Sheva publication at: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/185082#.VBV1oRaLUYA

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