A Brazilian Air Force Airbus KC-30 (the military version of the A330-200) aircraft landed in Brasilia at 3.47 am Monday after a 15-hour flight from Cairo carrying 48 refugees who had fled the war-torn Gaza Strip, Agencia Brasil reported.
Of the evacuees, 11 have dual Brazil-Palestine citizenship while the 37 others were Palestinian nationals with family ties to Brazilian people, it was explained. There group included 27 children and teenagers, 17 women, including two elderly women, and four adult men. A 22-year-old girl who was already in Egypt joined the 47 rescued from Gaza and boarded the same flight. She is the daughter of one of the members of the group.
On Saturday, they were allowed through the Rafah border crossing into Egypt, from where they traveled by bus to Cairo, where they were welcomed by Brazilian diplomats.
According to Itamaraty, a total of 24 Palestino-Brazilians, mostly men, were banned by Israel from crossing the border. At the moment, the Brazilian Government plans no new repatriation flights.
At first, they will stay two to three days in Brasilia. The first stage is psychological support, immunization, establishing contact with family and relatives and the issue of documentation. Some will go to the homes of family and friends. Those without a reference will be housed in the Social Assistance System in institutions where they will have all the support they need in terms of shelter and food. Support for them to rebuild their trajectory, since they come from a very complex situation, said André Quintão, the National Secretary for Social Assistance at the Ministry of Development and Social Assistance, Family and Fight against Hunger (MDS).
The first batch of 32 Brazilians rescued from Gaza landed in the South American country on Nov. 13 and were welcomed by President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in Brasilia.
The Brazilian government has rescued 1,524 Brazilians and Palestinian-Brazilians from the Gaza Strip and Israeli cities, including 53 pets. In total, the FAB has carried out 11 repatriation flights through Operation Returning in Peace.