It’s a beautiful sunny day and the silvery reflection of the sea light up a dozen small boats ready to take off. A few shekels provide families looking for entertainment a short tour around the waters of the port of Gaza City. In the back, fishermen organize the nets and the wooden crates with fish. Not far away, lying on benches, a few guys are taking advantage of the spring warmth to snooze beside the sea. It is a beautiful, yet bitter day. The sea of Gaza means Vittorio Arrigoni. Vik had climbed so many times into some of these boats in an attempt to protect with these fishermen with his presence — the fishermen had to come to terms every day with the limits imposed by the Israeli navy off the coast of Gaza.
Vittorio had met Samah instead, a young activist, in the countryside near the border barriers with Israel. “I had noticed his presence during an initiative in Shujayea in support of the peasants who could not go to their fields within the firing range the Israeli soldiers,” he recalls. “At the beginning, I was very cautious in his presence. Then, at one point, the soldiers started shooting and he made a leap forward to protect me. At that moment I realized that this stranger, Vittorio, cared more for the life of Palestinians than his.”
Five years ago, on the night between April 14 and 15, a gang of murderers, who proclaimed themselves as a “Salafist cell” escaping from the Tawhid wal Jihad group killed Vittorio Arrigoni, tearing him from the people of Gaza, from his family, from Palestinian friends and many Italians who followed him on social media and in il manifesto. The reasons for which the Italian activist and reporter was abducted and brutally killed were clarified only partially in the process. Two of his killers, Abdel Rahman Breizat and Bilal Omari, were also killed a few days after the murder in a firefight with Hamas police. A third tormentor, Mahmud al Salfiti, a few months ago, taking advantage of a permission by the prison authorities, fled from Gaza to go to die in Syria, apparently among the ranks of the Caliphate. Khader Jram, sentenced for first degree murder to 10 years, which was dropped to five years after the appeal, was released from prison but nothing is known about him, the family refuses any contact with journalists. The only one left in prison is Tamer Hasasnah, the fifth component of the Salafist cell. But no one can say for sure because the Gaza authorities we reached did not answer to our questions.