'I don’t know how to go on': ITV News finds father of badly burned Gazan boy

ITV News tracks down the father of Abdullah, a 13-year-old boy who was airlifted out of Gaza with severe burns and injuries caused by Israeli airstrikes, as Global Security Editor Rohit Kachroo reports

On an airfield in the Egyptian desert, three weeks ago, we met a young boy beginning a one thousand mile journey to save his life.

He was one of dozens of Palestinians being flown to Qatar for medical treatment.

But it was Abdullah’s need for care which was most urgent - the burned and bandaged boy's injuries so severe he was rushed off the military evacuation flight, before dozens of other wounded passengers.

A few days later we saw him again.

His screams echoed down the corridor at the Turkish hospital in downtown Doha. He was suffering from a pain that no surgery could cure.

But despite his burnt skin and severe facial scars - sustained in an Israeli airstrike in Gaza on December 4 - he was most terrified about losing his dad.

Abdullah receiving treatment in a Quatari hospital. Credit: ITV News

“I need my father, I have no one else left,” he shouted into the air. “I fear for him in this war, that they might bomb him.”

Days later, ITV News visited Abdullah again, and his mind remained fixated on his missing father.

"Physically, thank god, I feel good," he told us "but mentally, not yet."

"They haven’t brought me my father yet," he added. "They haven’t brought my father to me."

His father, Yousef, is still alive but remains in Gaza.

ITV News traced him to the southern city of Rafah, where he remains heartbroken after the trauma of seeing his mother and two siblings die in front of him.

He says he let Abdullah go to save his life.

Yousef said: "Even though Abdullah was in pain he managed to give a toy to his younger brother.

"He could barely answer him, he was unconscious. I don’t know how to go on in my life like this.

"We are in Ramadan, a time when we used to have family gatherings...but now I am alone."

For Abdullah, there may be months of surgery ahead.

But every step brings him closer to recovery and, perhaps, to a reunion with his father .

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