Get InQueensland in your inbox Subscribe

Grandmother, 66, first Australian confirmed dead in Israeli conflict


Grandmother Galit Carbone is the first Australian confirmed dead after the Islamic group Hamas attacked Israel, killing hundreds of civilians and taking others hostage.

Print article

The 66-year-old was executed by militants at her home in the Be’eri kibbutz, kilometres from the Gaza Strip.

Foreign Minister Penny Wong confirmed the death in a statement on Wednesday, saying the government was offering consular assistance to her family in Israel and Australia.

“On behalf of the government, I wish to convey my deepest condolences to the family and loved ones of Ms Carbone,” Senator Wong said.

“Australia unequivocally condemns the attacks on Israel by Hamas, there is no excuse for the deliberate killing of innocent civilians.

“Australia continues to urge the protection of civilian lives at all times.”

Executive Council of Australian Jewry co-CEO Alex Ryvchin said the confirmation home “brings us new pain and sorrow”.

Meanwhile, Australians in Israel have expressed frustration at the government for not offering a safe pathway home.

Canada’s foreign minister has announced the nation’s armed forces would begin evacuating citizens from Tel Aviv in the coming days.

Home Affairs Minister Clare O’Neil said the government was looking at all options when asked about repatriation flights.

Senator Wong is leading efforts by the government to help the estimated 10,000 Australian residents in Israel, as well as tourists.

Qantas has offered support for Australians in Israel and has been in contact with the foreign affairs department.

The airline doesn’t operate any regular scheduled flights to Israel so any repatriation effort would be outside of its usual network.

Keanu Vincente told ABC TV he felt stranded.

“Especially when I’m seeing constant other repatriation flights coming from other countries,” he said.

“So it would feel a lot safer … to have the Australian government doing those flights for all of the Australians here.”

Asher Lilley said the situation was terrifying. She and her sister have a commercial flight booked but are worried about cancellations.

“Every single day more and more flights are getting cancelled and all we can do is just hope that we are actually going to be able to get out,” she told Nine’s Today program from Tel Aviv.

She said she was told by the Australian embassy “we hope it works out” when she made contact and told them she had a commercial flight booked.

“(It was) as if we just missed a flight whereas we’re stuck in a literal war zone,” she said.

“The communication has been shocking … what’s the point of having an embassy if they’re not doing their job.

“We need to do better – it’s so scary being stuck in a war zone, we just want to get out, we just want to get home.”

Deputy Liberal leader Sussan Ley said the government wasn’t doing enough to make people feel safe in Australia.

“(Ms O’Neil) is not stepping up and reassuring the Jewish community of their safety, of implications with domestic terrorism which, of course, always relate to an international act of war,” she told Sky News.

Ms O’Neil said Australia and the government were standing with the Jewish community.

Defence Minister Richard Marles said the government was looking closely at additional security measures, “particularly around Jewish schools”.

A woman weeps at a memorial for victims.
A woman weeps during a vigil for victims of the attack at Caulfield Shule in Melbourne on Monday.
More than 1000 Israelis are dead and scores more, including some foreigners, have been captured and taken to Gaza as hostages.

News Corp has reported mother of two Adi Kaplon, the daughter-in-law of an Australian man, is being held by Hamas. The government has not confirmed if any citizens are being held hostage.

The death toll from Israel’s retaliatory air strikes is believed to have killed at least 830 people in Gaza.

More News stories

Loading next article