Sunday, May 19, 2024

Hamas video shows US, Israeli captives alive in Gaza

Palestinian group Hamas on Saturday published a video of two hostages, American-Israeli Keith Siegel and Israeli Omri Miran held in the Gaza Strip, showing footage of them urging the Israeli government to make a deal to secure their release.

In the video, Siegel, who appears to be speaking under duress, pleads for Netanyahu to negotiate a hostage release agreement with Hamas. This is the first video released of Siegel since he was kidnapped by Hamas alongside his wife from their home in Kibbutz Kfar Aza on October 7.

Miran said “I have been here for 202 days”, which suggests the video was filmed on Thursday.

This is the second hostage video released by Hamas in recent days. On Wednesday, the group released a video of Israeli-American hostage Hersh Goldberg-Polin, who had been kidnapped from the Nova music festival on October 7.

In the undated video, Goldberg-Polin is shown with part of his left arm missing several inches above the hand.

In a video released Saturday by the Hostages Families Forum Headquarters, Siegel’s family reacted to the latest footage from Hamas.

“Keith, I love you, we will fight until you return,” said his wife Aviva, who was released in November as part of the last hostage deal after 51 days in captivity.

“Seeing my father today only emphasizes to all of us how much we must reach a deal as soon as possible and bring everyone home,” his daughter, Ilan, stated, adding, “I demand that the leaders of this country watch this video and see (our) father crying out for help.”

The hostage forum called the proof of life of Siegel and Miran “the clearest evidence that the Israeli government must do everything to approve a deal for the return of all the hostages before Independence Day (May 14). The living should return for rehabilitation, and the murdered should receive a dignified burial”, the group said in a statement.

“Now is the time for the government and its leader to prove through actions their commitment to the citizens of Israel who await the return of the hostages. The Israeli government must not miss this opportunity to bring them all home!” the statement added.

Hamas gunmen broke into the home of Omri Miran, his wife, and two daughters at Nahal Oz Kibbutz on October 7. Miran was abducted, but his family survived.

Officials from Egypt and Israel told CNN on Friday that an Egyptian delegation was in Israel as part of an effort to advance the stalled negotiations aimed at releasing hostages and implementing a ceasefire in Gaza.

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