May 23, 2024

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Hamas releases two Israeli hostages from Gaza as the war continues

Hamas releases two Israeli hostages from Gaza as the war continues

Hamas released two more hostages on Monday, just days after two American women were released on Friday, sources confirmed to CBS News after a Hamas spokesman announced their release.

Israeli government officials confirmed that the names of the two hostages were Nurit Cooper and Yoshved Lifshitz. The two women were kidnapped from their homes in Kibbutz Nir Oz, a small community near the Gaza border I was attacked On October 7, Cooper, 80, was kidnapped along with her husband, Amiram Cooper, 85, their daughter-in-law, Noah, told the newspaper. BBC.

Lifshitz, 85, was kidnapped along with her husband, Oded Lifshitz, 83, according to police. The Times of Israel. The channel reported that the couple were peace activists and regularly transported patients from Gaza to hospitals throughout Israel to receive medical treatment.

The women’s husbands were not released.

According to a message published by the Hamas movement’s Telegram channel, the two hostages who were released on Monday were released for humanitarian reasons after mediation from Qatar and Egypt.

The International Committee of the Red Cross also facilitated the release, the agency said on social media.

“Our role as a neutral intermediary makes this work possible and we stand ready to facilitate any future release.” International Committee of the Red Cross chirp. “We hope they will soon return to their loved ones.”

Israel said that 222 hostages were taken during the Hamas operation The deadly October 7 rampage To inside Israel. The Israeli army announced on Friday that more than 20 of the hostages taken in Gaza are under 18 years old, and that between 10 and 20 of the hostages are over 80 years old.

The first two hostages to be released on Friday were: Judith and Natalie Ranan, dual US-Israeli citizens living in Evanston, Illinois, were visiting relatives in Israel. Raanan’s family was taken from Gaza by the International Committee of the Red Cross and reunited with their families in Israel.

During his visit to Tel Aviv last week. President Biden said There was no “higher priority” for him than securing the release of hostages held by Hamas.

Two sources told CBS News that the United States sought to slow down Israel’s plans for a ground invasion of Gaza in order to do so Prioritize the release of hostages And distribution of aid. The message is said to have been conveyed primarily through defensive channels.

He added: “I will not go into the details of our private conversations with the Israeli government, and with the Israeli leadership, but I will say in all our conversations, we continue to talk to them about the importance of having meaningful goals.” “Meaningful goals and a plan to achieve those goals,” State Department spokesman Matt Miller said during a press conference on Monday. “We were engaged at a number of levels, and the Pentagon was engaged in military-to-military channels about what their operations might look like, but beyond that, it was very difficult to go into detail other than to say that at the end of the day, these are decisions that Israel has to make.” “.

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