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Daniyal - دنيال: The Root Of My Heart

Posted by Niveen Rafati on October 11, 2004

Picture for Daniyal Village - Palestine: : أحد البيوت المتبقية من قرية دنيال (النبي دنيال) المهجرة - تصوير Sohel Makhoul سهيل مخول Click Image For Town Details
Daniyal is a very small town which still existing. I am a member of the Rafati family, the grandaughter of Mohammed Ismail Al-Rafati, and Khalil Al-Rafati, and the great grandaughter of Sheik Ismail Mohammed Rafati. My family fled in 1948 when the district was invaded. Only one person was believed to have stayed behind, who was my great grandmother. Her name was Zuhra Huneidi, umm Yacoub (she was originally from al-lid). Family members returned to the town later to look for her, and she was nowhere to be found. Up until today, noone really knows what happened to her. Furthermore, the photographed home on the Daniyal website happens to be my great grandfathers house. I recently visited Daniyal during a visit to Palestine, and was kicked out of the town by a jewish settler in a security truck. But, I was able to take photos of my great grandfathers house, which is still standing as well as my great uncles house. I will definitely take a future trip to Palestine, and I will return to the town of Daniyal. I refuse to let a jewish settler scare me away. Documents still exist which are proof of ownership of the land. One more interresting fact, which I recently learned from my great grandfathers son, which explained that he has documents that prove that my great grandfather also owns the land that al-lid airport currently exists on. Daniyal will always be the ROOT OF MY HEART!!!!



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The name of Daniyal got my attention as my late husband often told me about his visits (as a young boy) to his maternal grandfather who lived there.
My husband was a Huneidi, his mother a Rafati.

He spent many summer vacations in Daniyal and his grandfather took also took him on numerous trips to Jaffa and Jerusalem where he also had a number of relatives.

In October 2012 I visited his relatives in Amman and after many years met up with all the Huneidis and Rafatis I used to know.

It was great seeing them again.
I was awed to see the words "Daniyal, Huneidi and Rafati" all in one article. It brought back many happy memories of the many years I spent in the Middle East.

Thank you for your article. God Bless!