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Indian Woman, Family Evacuated From Gaza To Cairo Through Egypt's Rafah Crossing

Hailing from Srinagar, Lubna had earlier told The Quint that she has lived in conflict-ridden Gaza since 1997.

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Fifty two-year-old Lubna Nazir Wani Toman, who had been stranded in the Gaza Strip along with her husband and daughter since 7 October, was evacuated to Egypt on 14 November.  

Over a month after she left her home in Gaza City and moved towards the southern tip of the Gaza Strip, which shares a border with Egypt through the Rafah border crossing, Lubna was received by Indian Ambassador Ajit Gupte in Cairo.

The Indian Embassy in Cairo posted on microblogging platform X (formerly Twitter) that Lubna and her family are in “good health.” 

Hailing from Srinagar in Jammu and Kashmir, Lubna had earlier told The Quint that she has lived in conflict-ridden Gaza since 1997 – but this time, she had said, "the scenario is completely different."     

A day after her evacuation, Lubna’s brother Sohail Nazir Wani told The Quint that he spoke to her this morning.  

“She said that the Indian Ambassador at Cairo Mr Gupte and the Liason Officer Mr Das were extremely helpful. I can’t thank them enough. I got so emotional really, but I am relieved that she has been evacuated to safety in Cairo.” 

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‘Met My Children in Cairo’: Lubna

A day after she was evacuated from Gaza to Egypt, Lubna confirmed to The Quint that she has met her children in Cairo. 

Lubna is married to Nedal Toman, a Palestinian national who she had met in Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) in Uttar Pradesh. While she was pursuing her Masters in Biochemical Engineering, Toman was studying Electronics Engineering. After completing her post-graduation, she got married to him and the couple moved to Gaza in 1997.

They have three children – two daughters and a son. While their eldest daughter is a doctor and was stranded along with Lubna in Gaza, their younger children are studying at Cairo University in Egypt. 

The Rafah crossing – along the border of Gaza and Egypt – is the only operational exit route from Gaza. It has sporadically opened in recent weeks to facilitate the movement of humanitarian supplies and certain foreign nationals and wounded individuals. There are many foreign nationals still stranded there. 

Last month, Lubna, who has been in Gaza for 26 years now, had told The Quint: "I have witnessed every war here and never requested an evacuation. But this time, the situation is different." 

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