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Gaza Conflict Creates Tension, Fears For Relatives In Chicago

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Mai Martinez Mai Martinez
Mai Martinez co-anchors CBS 2 Chicago’s weekend evening newscasts and...
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(CBS) – It has been another deadly day in Gaza, with seven Israeli soldiers killed and four Palestinians killed in addition to 60 others injured.

Here in Chicago, families with loved ones in the area are also calling for an end to the violence.

CBS 2’s Mai Martinez reports.

Deb Zaluda’s phone is constantly with her these days.

It’s how she communicates with her 22-year-old daughter who is serving in the Israeli military.

An app on Zaluda’s phone also notifies her of airstrikes going on in Israel.

“She hasn’t really said much about the fighting itself. I think it just concerns her she has many friends and many soldiers who are currently in Gaza,” she says. “She just worries all the time.”

For Ahmed Hamad, who has lived in Chicago, the fears and concerns are similar — only his family and friends are on the Palestinian side of the conflict.

He’s says he lost six cousins in bombings already, and fears more of his loved ones will be killed.

“Every time the phone rings I’m terrified,” he says. “Every time I get an email, I’m worried, or a phone call or text message, I’m worried that it might be bad news about a relative or someone I know.”

Hamad says sometimes he thinks it would be easier if he were still in Gaza with his family, so that everyone could be together.

For now, his lifelines to reach them are his computer and phone.

“Every time you talk to someone it’s like the last one,” he says.

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