Israel-Hamas war, hostage negotiations, Gaza humanitarian crisis

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Family members of two Israeli hostages who appeared in a video released by Hamas on Monday have been giving their reactions to Israeli media.

Hamas’ military wing, the Qassam Brigades, released a video showing three elderly Israeli men held in captivity in Gaza, including 80-year-old Yoram Metzger.

“It’s hard to see him now, it’s about time to bring them back home,” Metzger’s son, Rani Metzger, told Channel 11.

Rani Metzger said his father looked very old and unkempt and that he and two other kibbutz members who appeared in the video, Chaim Peri, 79, and Amiram Cooper, 84, “do not look in good shape.”

“I think it should be understood that we don’t have a lot of time left. Everything should be done in order to return them,” Metzger said.

Mai Albini, Peri’s grandson, told N12 that he had not watched the video but was aware that his grandfather was “in a very bad shape and seems to be withering in captivity.”

Video footage: In a brief message in the video, Peri called for the hostages’ unconditional release. He spoke of their tremendous suffering and their fear of airstrikes in Gaza.

The video displays a caption that reads: “Do not discard me in my old age.” 

It is not clear when or where the video was filmed.  

A spokesperson for the Israel Defense Forces called the clip a “criminal terror video.” 

Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari also said the release of the video “reflects Hamas’s cruelty against elderly and innocent civilians, in need for medical treatment.” 

Kibbutz Nir Oz, where the three men lived before being kidnapped, said it appreciates “any sign of life from the hostages, but time is running out.”

Hamas has said no more hostages will be released until there is a ceasefire in Gaza.


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