May 30, 2024

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Sister of Israeli hostage Elad Katzir says he might have been saved if agreement had been reached earlier in the year

By CNN's Eugenia Youssef and Mohamed Tawfiq

The family of Israeli hostage Elad Katzir, who the Israeli military says was likely killed in January, may be alive today if a hostage ceasefire agreement had been reached, the family said.

Katsir's body was recovered overnight from Khan Yunis and returned to his family in Israel after identification procedures, according to an earlier joint statement issued by the Israel Defense Forces and the Israeli General Security Service.

“He could have been saved if an agreement had been reached in time,” his sister Carmit Katzir said during a small gathering in Tel Aviv on Saturday.

Katsir's body was rescued overnight from Khan Yunis and returned to his family in Israel after identification procedures, according to an earlier joint statement by the Israeli military and the Israeli Security Agency. He was kidnapped by Palestinian Islamic Jihad activists from Kibbutz Nir Oz on October 7. Israeli army spokesman Daniel Hagari said Katzir was likely killed in January, according to Israeli intelligence.

“Our leadership is cowardly and driven by political considerations and that is why this did not happen,” his sister said. “He may be recognized as a victim of hostilities, but the accurate term is a victim of negligent acts.”

she made Similar comments Earlier Saturday on Facebook as well.

Katsir's body was recovered overnight from Khan Yunis and returned to his family in Israel after identification procedures, according to an earlier joint statement by the Israeli military and the Israeli Security Agency. Activists from the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement kidnapped him from Kibbutz Nir Oz on October 7.

Israeli military spokesman Daniel Hagari said on Saturday that Katzir was likely killed in January, citing Israeli intelligence.

“Katsir was killed by his captors,” Hagari said when asked whether Katzir was killed and not accidentally shot by Israeli forces, adding, “We know this through very reliable intelligence.”

CNN cannot independently verify the information provided by Hagari.

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