- Title: Feeling the heat? Palestinians cool off at natural springs and sea amid pandemic
- Date: 20th May 2020
- Summary: JERICHO, WEST BANK (MAY 18, 2020) (REUTERS) YOUNG GIRL LAUGHING AS SPRING WATER CASCADES OVER HER HEAD VARIOUS OF CHILDREN PLAYING IN WATER AND SPLASHING EACH OTHER GIRL POURING BUCKET OF WATER OVER HEAD OF MAN (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) RESIDENT OF JERICHO, MAHMOUD ABU ROMI, SAYING: "As you know, because of the coronavirus, may God keep it away from us, resorts and restaurants are all closed. This spring is the only place of entertainment for the resident of this city (Jericho) as well as for visitors who come from outside. They can't bear the heat anymore and come here to have fun and continue their fast." VARIOUS OF ELDERLY MAN, AKRAM BARAHMEH, SMILING WITH EYES CLOSED AS ANOTHER MAN POURS WATER ON HIM PEOPLE IN AND AROUND POOL FILLED WITH SPRING WATER YOUNG CHILD CARRIED IN MAN'S ARMS AND LOOKING AROUND BOY PUTTING ARM INTO SPRING'S HEAVY CURRENT UPSTREAM VARIOUS OF CHILDREN AND ADULTS STANDING AND SITTING AROUND SPRING WATER MAN TALKING TO GIRL WRAPPED IN PINK BATH TOWEL (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) RESIDENT OF JERICHO, AKRAM BARAHMEH, SAYING: "Because of the heat wave, we brought the children to the spring. At the moment, all pools are closed. You don't pay an entry fee here and there is a very joyful atmosphere. Everyone is enjoying, the young and the elderly alike." GAZA CITY, GAZA (MAY 18, 2020) (REUTERS) MAN TAKING SELFIE WITH FAMILY AS THEY ARE BREAKING FAST WHILE SITTING ON BEACH DURING SUNSET FAMILY UNPACKING BAGS WITH FOOD AND PLACING THEM ON TABLES MAN EATING LARGE GROUPS OF PEOPLE SPREAD ALL OVER BEACH HAVING IFTAR DURING SUNSET (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) GAZA RESIDENT, AYMAN ABEDELAL, SAYING: "I have a mixed feeling between happiness and sadness. I am happy because we are able, at least, to come to this beautiful place, enjoy the breeze and the calm." MEN UNDER MULTICOLOR BEACH UMBRELLA GIRL PLAYING ON SAND PEOPLE STANDING ON BEACH MEN SWIMMING (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) GAZA RESIDENT, MAMDOH MURTAJI, SAYING: "This is the only place where we can take a breather. We have no other option. We are under siege to begin with, and now the (coronavirus) disease. So sitting on the beach adds joy to our lives. During Ramadan, we have our iftar by the sea and relax afterwards. It is better than staying home." BEACH DOTTED WITH FAMILIES EATING BY SEA SUNSET OVER SEA
- Embargoed: 3rd June 2020 14:32
- Keywords: Gaza Health Palestinians West Bank cold water coronavirus heat sea springs weather
- Location: JERICHO, WEST BANK AND GAZA
- City: JERICHO, WEST BANK AND GAZA
- Country: Palestinian Territories
- Topics: Health/Medicine
- Reuters ID: LVA001CEQK9QT
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: With his eyes closed and a smile over his face, 67-year-old Palestinian Akram Barahmeh enjoyed every drop of the cold spring water cascading over his face at a natural spring in Jericho.
Temperatures soaring over 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) in the West Bank and Gaza during the last days have pushed Palestinians to cool off by natural springs and the Mediterranean sea.
Measures to curb the spread of the coronavirus have included the closure of pools and water parks, usually popular spots during heat waves, especially when they occur during the month of Ramadan.
Instead, dozens of Palestinians splashed around in the ice-cold spring water in Jericho, hoping to beat the heat and take their mind off the coronavirus, which has killed two and infected 391 others in the Palestinian Territories so far.
While further south in the Gaza Strip, families have taken to breaking their Ramadan fast on the beach.
The sea's sparkling blue water offers a source of relief for the roughly two million Palestinians living in the territory under an Israeli blockade.
As the sun set over the Mediterranean, Gaza resident Ayman Abedelal with his family said it was one of the few rare moments they have to enjoy the breeze and precious moments of calm.
(Production: Arafat Barbakh, Adel Abu Nemeh, Mohammed Shana, Rami Ayyub, Mustafa Abu Ganeyeh)
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