We were woken up by sirens this morning. I actually thought it was a car, a car alarm. And we finally understood what it was. We had to wake up the children and run to the shelter, Karolina van Ede-Tzenvirt, a journalist living in Jerusalem, said on TVN24 after the Hamas attack on Israel. Parents of Poles living in this country contacted the Kontakt24 editorial office. A statement on this matter was issued by the Polish embassy in Israel.
Approx. time. At 6.30 local time (5.30 in Poland) the Hamas attack on Israel began. Fighters have infiltrated many cities in the south of the country. Israel was also attacked with thousands of rockets. There are reports of many dead and wounded on both sides.
Van Ede-Tzenvirt: we had to wake up the children and run to the shelter
The guest of TVN24 was Karolina van Ede-Tzenvirt, a journalist from the Polish-language magazine “Kaleidoscope” living in Jerusalem. She was asked whether Hamas rocket attacks also reached the city where she lives. – They did, I mean, I live in Jerusalem and it’s actually always relatively safe here. Because it is Jerusalem, where a lot of Arabs live and there are Muslim holy places. And I still have a good situation, if any situation can be said to be good at the moment, she said.
– I live close to the American embassy, so it’s also a bit of a cakewalk around us. However, we were simply woken up this morning by sirens. I actually thought it was a car, a car alarm. And we finally understood what it was. We had to wake up the children and run to the shelter. All houses in Israel have shelters. And then we heard explosions, she continued.
– These are explosions of non-falling rockets. Fortunately, only missiles that are simply eliminated in the air by the missile defense system. And he doesn’t let them fall. Of course, sometimes it happens and they actually fell, but it’s further away from me, luckily – she added.
– We are relatively safe, but we are in complete shock. We didn’t expect something like this. Besides, I hear what reporters and the state are saying, that this is also a complete surprise. And it is also a surprise, unfortunately, for the army, which is very sad for us, because we have an army and such a defense and intelligence system known all over the world. And in fact, we were completely surprised – said the journalist.
Karola van Ede-Tzenvirt drew attention to the symbolic date of the attack. – Today is the 50th anniversary of the Yom Kippur War (attack Egypt and Syria to Israel – ed.). And that’s certainly one of the reasons why it happened today. And we are really shocked, she said.
“They stayed in a private accommodation near which a rocket fell”
We received reports from parents of Poles living in Israel Contact24.
Mr. Bartosz from the Chełm district in the Lublin Voivodeship called the editorial office and said that his daughter and seven other music school students were waiting at the Tel Aviv airport to return to Poland. – My daughter went to Israel with the music school. The group includes eight students aged 13-18 and two guardians. They were supposed to return today. There was supposed to be a flight to Warsaw at 10:50, but it was canceled. I contacted the guardians and the embassy, but unfortunately I did not receive any specific information. I don’t know how long they will wait at the airport, he said.
Mr. Krzysztof, whose son is staying in Tel Aviv with his partner, also contacted Kontakt24. Mr. Krzysztof said that his son wanted to shorten his stay in Israel due to the Hamas attack. He was supposed to fly back to the airport in Katowice today, but the flight was canceled. – My son and his partner flew to Tel Aviv on Wednesday and were supposed to stay there for ten days. They stayed in a private accommodation near which a rocket landed. They managed to buy tickets to Katowice, they were supposed to fly out at 8 p.m., they were supposed to be in Poland at 10:50 p.m., but the flight was canceled, he said. Mr. Krzysztof admitted that contact with his son is difficult.
Statement from the Polish Embassy in Israel
The Kontakt24 editorial team sent questions to the e-mail address of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman regarding the steps taken to help Poles who have problems with leaving Israel. Questions were also sent by text message to the mobile number of the spokesman, Łukasz Jasina. We received a reply (text message): “Polish diplomatic and consular services are working on the situation. In order not to spread panic, we will communicate matters as they happen. We encourage those who cannot be reached by phone to check the embassy account on the x portal,” wrote Łukasz Jasina.
The Polish Embassy in Israel issued the following message on the X website (formerly Twitter). “We strongly recommend that people staying in Israel stay – at least until tomorrow – in safe accommodation. We advise against any travel within the country. Ben Gurion Airport is operational, but many flights have been canceled,” it was written.
“You should absolutely take care of your safety, and after canceling the alert, check the availability of air connections,” it added.
TVN24, tvn24.pl, Kontakt24
Main photo source: Abaca/PAP