Yocheved Lifshitz, Israeli Hostage Freed by Hamas, Details Captivity in Gaza

Despite a weekslong bombing effort by the Israeli army, which has left hundreds useless, in accordance with the Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry, Ms. Lifshitz described a seemingly well-organized operation, with operatives given particular tasks, together with medical doctors, guards and medics.

The militants introduced her to a big underground corridor the place they’d gathered 25 individuals, earlier than 5 from Nir Oz had been separated and positioned in a room on their very own, Ms. Lifschitz mentioned. “We were closely guarded by their guards and a medic. At a certain point a doctor also arrived and made sure that we received our pills and medication,” she mentioned.

Ms. Lifshitz mentioned her captors paid particular attention to the health of the hostages, offering medicine, shampoo and female hygiene merchandise. The hostages had been fed the identical meager provisions their guards ate: a single day by day meal of pita bread, two sorts of cheese and cucumber.

“They were very attentive to the sanitary aspect,” she mentioned, “so we don’t get sick on them, God forbid. There was a doctor nearby who would come every two or three days to check in on us. And the medic took the responsibility to bring us medication. If they did not have the exact same medication, they brought us the equivalent.”

In a video documenting Ms. Lifshitz’s handover to the International Committee of the Red Cross, which was filmed and launched by the armed wing of Hamas, Ms. Lifschitz seems to understand one Hamas member’s fingers and repeat the Hebrew phrase “shalom,” which means goodbye and in addition peace.

Her grandson, Daniel Lifshitz, mentioned in a televised interview that his grandmother would stay in the hospital for now, including that she would “need a lot of time to recover from this, even though she looks strong.”

Israel has traditionally made the return of captives a nationwide precedence. In 2011, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu launched over 1,000 Palestinian prisoners — together with Hamas’s present chief in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar — in trade for a single Israeli soldier, Gilad Shalit.

But the nation has by no means confronted a disaster in which so many voters had been being held hostage at one time. Hamas has mentioned it’s prepared to contemplate releasing “foreign nationalities under temporary custody, as and when security circumstances permit.”

Before Tuesday’s launch of Ms. Lifshitz and Ms. Cooper, the group had allowed the discharge of solely two different captives, the twin American-Israeli residents Judith Raanan and her daughter, Natalie. The Raanans, launched on Oct. 20, haven’t spoken publicly about their ordeal.

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