'I was really happy I was finally coming home': This teen's story of being trapped in Gaza
St. John's teen Abdallah Shahwan's recent trip to visit his aunt in Palestine took an unexpected turn
It was far from your typical teenage vacation. Abdallah Shahwan, 14, of St. John's recently travelled to visit a sick relative in Gaza, in the Palestinian territories.
The trip was meant to be a couple of weeks. But a flare up in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict shut down the borders, and there was no way out for Shahwan and his family.
He recalls hearing explosions in the middle of the night.
"It was scary for the first time being there," he said. "I was shocked, and didn't really know what was going on."
As scary as the experience was for Shahwan, it gave him a new perspective on his life in Newfoundland and Labrador.
What happened to Abdallah? Click on the player to hear his story:
CBC audiences have met Abdallah Shahwan before.
In 2017, he wrote to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in the wake of a massacre at a Quebec City mosque, telling him that a visit would help make his mosque more safe.
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