Palestinian group Hamas launched a large-scale surprise attack on Israel from Gaza leaving hundreds dead. A large number of Israeli soldiers and civilians, especially women, are also being held hostage by Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Some are alive and some are presumed dead, military spokesman Lt Col Jonathan Conricus said, BBC reported.
The official account of Israel War Room, a nonprofit organisation, took to X to share pictures of women and men kidnapped by Hamas amid war.
”Hamas seems to have kidnapped mostly women. It has already been confirmed that Hamas fighters are using rape as a weapon of war. There must be no mercy for these barbarians,” they wrote on X, along with images of missing Israelis.
Here’s the tweet:
Hamas seems to have kidnapped mostly women.
It has already been confirmed that Hamas fighters are using rape as a weapon of war.
There must be no mercy for these barbarians. https://t.co/ICTubV3k0B
— Israel War Room (@IsraelWarRoom) October 7, 2023
Several Israelis have also been sharing photos of friends and family who they say have apparently been kidnapped by Hamas fighters. Relatives of those missing have been asked to hand their belongings to police stations so that DNA samples can be taken.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Hamas was responsible for the hostages’ well-being and Israel would “settle the score with anyone who harms them”.
The number of Israeli nationals held captive by Hamas is “unprecedented”, IDF spokesman Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus told CNN. “These are extremely disturbing scenes for any Israeli to see. I don’t even want to imagine what the fate of this Israeli person will be at the hands of these blood-thirsty animals,” he added.
Meanwhile, a Hamas spokesman claimed that the number of Israeli hostages taken is ”many times greater than what Netanyahu thinks.”
Earlier, shocking footage of a 25-year-old woman being kidnapped from a peace festival by Hamas fighters surfaced on the internet. The distressing video showed Noa Argamani pleading for her life while sitting on the back of a fighter’s motorcycle. In the video, Ms Argamani was forcibly being driven away by gunmen as she screamed, ”Don’t kill me! No, no, no.” Her boyfriend Avi Nathan was also seen being manhandled by the Hamas group, reported the New York Post.
Israeli security forces are now carrying out operations to rescue the hostages. Israel’s health ministry has not confirmed how many people have died, but Israeli media put the number of people killed at 300. More than 1,860 others have been injured.