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REUTERS-PICTURES30/
RTR4PF8H
13 Feb. 2015
Israeli soldiers mourn during the funeral of their... more
REUTERS-PICTURES30/
RTR4PF8H
13 Feb. 2015
Beersheba, Israel
Israeli soldiers mourn during the funeral of their comrade Alex Mashavisky at a cemetery in Beersheba in this January 7, 2009 file photo.

Eric Gaillard: I was in Israel to help out the Reuters Jerusalem office during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip in January 2009.

They asked to go to Beersheba to cover the funeral of an Israeli soldier, Alex Mashavisky, who was killed in an operation in Gaza.

There was so much emotion at this funeral to begin with, and within minutes a rocket exploded near the cemetery and everybody had to fall to the ground. It was a really surreal and emotionally charged moment.

The place was so narrow and there were so many photographers. The challenge was to hold a spot where I would be able to see the ceremony.

I shot this picture with a Canon Mark III and a zoom 16-35 lens. A 14 mm would have been much better because the place was very narrow and I was really close from the soldiers. I sent the picture from the cemetery with a MIFI which was at this time a novelty. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/Files (ISRAEL - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST CONFLICT TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE IS PART OF PACKAGE '30 YEARS OF REUTERS PICTURES'

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