11-year-old Yousif was the only member of his family to survive the devastating flood in Derna. The boy and his loved ones were carried away by the water into the sea, but he was carried back to the shore by the waves. Sky News, which tells Yousif’s story, writes about a “miracle”.
A devastating flood hit Derna, one of the main cities in the east Libya, September 10. – People were sleeping, woke up and saw their houses surrounded by water – Derna resident Saleh al-Obaidi told Reuters.
The disaster occurred after heavy rains, which caused two dams to collapse, releasing huge masses of water. The element swept almost everything it encountered into the sea. One quarter of the city of nearly 100,000 people was destroyed. According to the Libyan Red Crescent, the death toll is over 11,000, and almost twice as many are missing.
Sky News writes about a boy who lost his entire family in the flood. Eleven people died, only 11-year-old Yousif survived. The portal notes that the boy emerged from the cataclysm almost unscathed. He only has “a few scratches on his left leg and a bandage wrapped around his right foot.”
“The water lifted us and then threw us to the ground”
In an interview with Sky News, Yousif described the moment the flood hit his family home. The boy and his loved ones were swept into the sea, but the waves carried them back to the shore. – The water lifted me and then threw me to the ground – said the 11-year-old. – I woke up on the ground, got up and started walking. Later, a police car took us to the school building.
When asked by the journalist what he feels, Yousif answers briefly: – Nothing.
Currently, the boy is under the care of his cousin, Mustafa Farash. The man quoted by the British portal is still “in shock”. He said that so far the bodies of only five of Yousif’s 11 family members have been found. Farash, a civil engineer by profession, says he is upset that the disaster could have been prevented. – These dams should be maintained every year, there should be an observation post there. Everyone here: men, women, children know that this flood is the result of negligence and corruption.
Derna. Entire families died
In the BBC Today program, Johr Ali noted that the powerful waters had washed away homes and entire families. One of his friends found his “nephew dead in the street, the water had thrown him through the roof.”
A reporter from Libya named Ali told the BBC that his friend lost his entire family in the disaster. – I was next to him, I heard the news about the death of the entire family – he reports. -His mother, his father, his two brothers, his sister Maryam and his wife, his newlywed wife whom he had sent to Libya to visit family just two weeks ago, and his little child who was eight months old. Everyone died, his entire family is dead. He asks me: what should I do?
Sky News indicates that “countless children here (in Derna) are now orphaned”.
Main photo source: PAP/EPA/Mohamed Shalash