One Irish man has said the night time in Gaza saw an almost constant barrage of rockets for several hours.
Ibrahim Alagha, his wife Hamida and children Sami, Eileen and Omar arrived back in Ireland on Saturday.
They were among the 23 Irish citizens to be evacuated from Gaza through the Rafah Crossing last Wednesday.
The family, from Blanchardstown, travelled from Gaza to Cairo and on to Dublin.
Ibrahim told The Hard Shoulder while it feels "amazing" to be back, he wasn't sure he would get here.
"There were several occasions that I thought, 'This is going to be my last night and I'm never going to be out'," he said.
"When I got out of Gaza it was a Wednesday, the communication was supposed to be cut on Thursday.
"I thought to myself, 'If Thursday comes then we're talking about weeks before things would go back to normal'".
Ibrahim said large areas of Khan Yunis, where he was, were "put under military zone by Israel".
"It was getting very, very dangerous".
'I'm going to be out of here'
Ibrahim said they decided very quickly after the October 7th attack that they wanted to leave.
"Everyone knew that this is going to lead to a war, but people in Gaza this is now the fourth war they're experiencing in the last 10 or 15 years," he said.
"This is the first time Hamas started the war.
"People were thinking maybe it's going to be quite an intense war.
"Usually whenever there's problems and wars in Gaza, every embassy will step in and take its citizens out.
"It usually does that within the first day or two - and I was thinking, 'OK, the war is starting but I'm hoping within a couple of days I'm going to be out of here'.
"I contacted the Embassy and of course they assured me that they will do everything they can.
"But never did I expect it's going to be taking all that long time, it took around 40 days to get me out".
Ibrahim said his apartment in Gaza City has now been destroyed.
"There was one night where there was heavy, heavy bombing in Gaza, and very close to my apartment," he said.
"The next day I took the decesion I want to leave Gaza and go to my family's home, which is in Khan Yunis.
"That's where I spent the rest of the war".
Ibrahim said the bombings in Gaza were almost constant at night.
"During the night, we're talking about five or six hours, every five minute interval there's a bomb coming down," he said.
"The sound of that bomb, first you will hear the whistle coming down... and then you hear this huge, massive explosion with the building, you feel it shaking.
"With every explosion there's some windows being broken and screaming people, people just screaming around you.
"Whether in my house my children, or the neighbours, you will hear screaming from everywhere.
"I was in a war in 2008, but never ever did I hear or feel any of the explosions that we heard this time".
'My son wakes up screaming'
Ibrahim said it was even harder to try and protect his children from what was happening.
"It was very difficult to shield them completely, especially my eldest son Sami, [who is] eight years old " he said.
"He was watching the TV, he was listening to the radio, he understood what was going on.
"He can see the smoke and understand that that smoke came as a result of an explosion.
"He knew what was going on.
"He used to sleep alone here in Dublin; but now what I'm noticing is that he always wants to sleep hugging someone or beside someone.
"He's overthinking a lot of things.
"He knows that windows get broken if they're not open properly or something, so he has now a fear of sleeping beside a window because it might break.
"He heard a story of a door that got jammed after an explosion and didn't open, and there was people trapped in.
"He doesn't want to see a door closed, he always wants to see the door open.
"There's also a lot of nights where he had really bad nightmares and just wake up screaming."
Ibrahim said they are very thankful to be here, but thinking of others.
"We're in safety now, we're no longer going to face any of the hunger and the thirst and the fear and darkness that we had," he said.
"On the other side, there are a lot of friends and family that we have just left behind that we don't know that we're ever going to see them again.
"Also the memories that I had of the beautiful city of Gaza where I was raised up, it's going to be gone.
"I'm not sure how long it will take me to get back, or [if I will] ever see it again," he added.
Latest reports from health authorities indicate that more than 13,000 civilians in total have died in Gaza since the October 7th attacks by Hamas, and subsequent Israeli offensive.
Out of Gaza’s 2.3 million people, 1.7 million are now displaced according to the United Nations.
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