Israel confirms the deaths of 15 of the 137 hostages still in Hamas hands

The Israeli government confirmed on Monday the deaths of 15 of the 137 hostages still held captive Islamist group Hamas in the Gaza Strip. The Prime Minister’s Office Benjamin Netanyahu released a statement releasing the names of “15 civilians and soldiers who were murdered and continue to be kidnapped in Gaza.”

Among them are Shaked Dahan, Tomer Achims, Kirill Borovsky, Assaf Hammi, Mia Goren, Ofra Kidar, Aryeh Zalmanovitz, Eliyahu Margalit, Ronen Engel, Aviv Azili, Ravid Aryeh Katz, Shani Luke, Oren Goldin, Yonatan Samarno and Guy Iloz. According to the Israeli government, which confirmed the deaths of the 15 hostages based on intelligence and evidence collected, of the more than 240 abducted by Hamas in its Oct. 7 attack, 122 are still living in Gaza or in the Gaza Strip stationed troops.

Among the hostages believed to be alive are two children, brothers Ariel and Kfir Bibas, aged 4 years and 10 months respectively, who were kidnapped along with their mother Shiri Silverman Bibas – of Argentine origin – and father Yarden Bibas. Israel accused Hamas of breaking the terms of a ceasefire that lasted from November 24 to 30 by refusing to release Ms. Bibas and her two children, but eThe Islamist group claims that these three people were killed by Israeli bombings, that they offered to hand over their bodies and that Israel rejected them.

On Saturday, thousands of people, including some of the recently released hostages, gathered They demonstrated in Tel Aviv to demand the government save the rest. But Netanyahu has insisted that the priority now is to step up the military offensive in Gaza. A total of 105 hostages – 81 Israelis and 24 foreigners (23 Thais and one Filipino) – were released during the seven-day ceasefire, which also included the release of 240 Palestinians held in Israeli prisons.

Others join them four previously released hostages: an Israeli-American mother and daughter and two elderly Israeli women. On the other hand, Israel has recovered the bodies of three hostages who died in Gaza: a man, a soldier and an elderly woman. There are therefore 122 living hostages and fifteen dead in Gaza; In total, 110 people were released alive and three were rescued after their deaths.

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The Hamas attack that sparked the war on October 7 left more than 1,200 people dead in Israel. Since then, the military offensive in Gaza has left more than 15,500 dead, 41,316 injured, more than 7,000 missing and 1.8 million displaced, 80% of the total population.

Number of Israeli soldiers killed in the war

The Israeli army confirmed this on Mondayon the deaths of three other soldiers in connection with the fighting with Hamas in the Gaza Strip, bringing the total number of deaths to 75 since the offensive against the enclave began following the Islamist group’s attacks on October 7.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said on its website that the deceased were Neriya Shaer, Ben Zussman and Binyamin Yeshoshua Nidham, before clarifying that the first of them died in combat in the center of the Palestinian enclave, while the other two died there in the northern Gaza Strip.

“Netanyahu will be tried like Milosevic”

For his part, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan predicted this Monday that the Israeli Prime Minister would be tried as a war criminal, similar to the former Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic (1941-2006). “Netanyahu (…) will be judged not only as a war criminal, but also as a butcher of Gaza, like Milosevic.”Erdogan said this at the opening of a meeting of the Standing Committee on Economic and Trade Cooperation of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (COMCEC) in Istanbul.

Milosevic was arrested in 2001 and accused by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia of being responsible for war crimes and genocide during the Balkan War in the early 1990s. The trial against him was never completed due to the death of Milosevic, the Serbian president, in his cell in The Hague in 2006.

Erdogan also reiterated his criticism of Western countries for “unconditionally supporting Israel to kill more children” and accused the United Nations of being a structure incapable of bringing peace or hope to humanity.

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