Stories of Hamas hostage detentions

Days after the start of the truce between Israel and Hamas, none of the Israeli hostages released so far have spoken to the media or discussed their experiences in public: most of them are hospitalized, more as a protective measure and privacy. than for the actual need for treatment, because the Israeli government is trying to reduce public exposure to focus on their psychological and physical recovery. In recent days, however, relatives of the hostages have begun speaking to the media.

According to initial reports, the conditions of detention were rather harsh. Many of those held hostage lost weight due to poor diet. Many of them were kept in the darkness of Hamas tunnels throughout their detention or had to sleep on benches or plastic chairs. At least one of them tried to escape before being recaptured. Some of them only learned of the assassination of their loved ones by Hamas during the October 7 attack after their release.

However, much information about the hostages remains scarce and we will likely learn more in the coming days. Israeli psychologists who work with them they are looking to avoid putting pressure and generating new trauma as much as possible. During the first four days of the truce, between last Friday and Monday, Hamas freed 50 of the more than 200 Israeli hostages kidnapped during the attack on civilians on October 7, in exchange for the release of 150 Palestinian prisoners.

One of the most comprehensive stories so far is that of Merav Raviv, a relative of three freed hostages: her aunt Ruthie Munder, her cousin Keren Munder, and Karen’s son Ohad. According to the story, Ruthie and Keren Munder lost more than seven kilos during their imprisonment because they were fed almost exclusively on rice and pita, a type of bread. The two women slept on a row of three plastic chairs tied together and said they were held captive both underground (presumably in Hamas tunnels) and in buildings above ground.

However, they were still monitored: to go to the toilet, they had to knock on their cell door to alert their jailers, and wait for someone to open the door for them. In some cases, they said, the wait could last hours.

Ava Adar, granddaughter of Yaffa Adar, who at 85 is the oldest of the freed hostages, said her grandmother has also lost weight but is in overall good health. Yaffa Adar counted each day of captivity, and when he returned he knew that exactly 50 days had passed.

According to testimonies from relatives, most of the hostages were held in underground tunnels. Eyal Nouri, Adina Moshe’s nephew, said his aunt had to “get used to sunlight again” because she had been in the dark for weeks. Adina Moshe, 72, only discovered upon liberation that her husband had been killed by Hamas militants, but that her son had survived. One of the most terrible stories from this point of view is that of Noam and Alma Or, two teenagers aged 16 and 13 released on Friday, who they discovered only then that their mother had been killed by Hamas and their father was still missing.

Another notable story is that of Ron Kriboy, a 25-year-old Russian-Israeli, whose presence among the freed hostages is already quite unusual in itself: so far, almost exclusively women, elderly people and children have been released, as well as some Thais. . Kriboy he was released according to Hamas, in gratitude for the closeness that Russia has expressed towards the group in recent weeks.

However, Kriboy’s relatives told the media that at one point Kriboy managed to escape from his captors when the building he was in was bombed. He had managed to hide for four days, alone. He had attempted to reach the border with Israel, but was found and taken back into captivity.

In general, the health of the hostages released so far is good. Almost all of them can walk and talk, and few of them required intensive medical care: among them an 84-year-old woman, who was rushed to the hospital for a pre-existing medical problem that had been neglected during her captivity.

Source: ilpost


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