SUNDAY TIMES WEB DESK: Her entire immediate family was wiped out in an air strike by a Saudi-led coalition that backs Yemen’s government, using an explosive device Amnesty International says was made in the US.
Images of Buthaina’s rescue and a picture of her swollen and bruised at a hospital trying to force open one of her eyes with her fingers were beamed worldwide.
That international fame saw her become something of a propaganda pawn in the war between Yemen’s Iran-backed Huthi rebels and Saudi media.
“I was in my mother’s room with my father, sisters, brother and uncle, the first missile hit, and my father went to get us sugar to get over the shock, but then the second missile hit, and then the third,” she says.
“And then the house fell,” adds the little girl, who says she is eight.
It was the night of August 25, 2017.
The uncle who died was her “favorite”, she says.
Along with her family, eight other civilians — including two children — were killed in a house nearby.
A few days later, the picture of Buthaina attempting to force open her right eye went viral.
The Saudi-led alliance admitted responsibility for the air strike describing it as a “technical mistake”.
But it drew strong international condemnation.