‘Cold and Scary’ – Families Accuse Israeli Government of Abandoning Gaza Captives

Families accused the Israeli government of abandoning captives in Gaza. (Photo: Palestine Chronicle, screen grab)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

According to the WSJ, the accusation emerged after a senior Israeli official informed families that the government would not halt the war in Gaza.

Families of Israeli captives currently held in Gaza have accused the Israeli government of abandoning their relatives in favor of destroying the Palestinian Resistance movement Hamas, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday. 

According to the WSJ, the accusation emerged after a senior Israeli official informed families that the government would not halt the war in Gaza in order to reach a prisoner exchange deal.

In a statement on Friday, the Hostages Families Forum, a support and advocacy group, said that “the Israeli government made a conscious and deliberate decision” to sacrifice the captives.

Tzachi Hanegbi, head of Israel’s National Security Council, reportedly told a group of relatives on Thursday that Israel would continue the war and might be able to secure the release of female, elderly, and sick captives in the coming months. 

However, Hanegbi added that Hamas might refuse to return all captives since Israel was unwilling to stop the war.

The WSJ spoke with Gil Dickmann, whose aunt is currently held in Gaza. Dickmann reportedly said that Hanegbi showed little sympathy when some relatives became upset, and that “he was shocked by Hanegbi’s tone and the government’s lack of a plan.”

“The tone he used to speak to us and family members in the room was not just disdainful but cold and scary. He degraded their pain,” said Dickmann.

Seeking to Kill Us

Dickmann’s testimony seems to confirm the statement released on Friday by Alexander Trufanov, an Israeli captive currently held in Gaza by the Al-Quds Brigades, the military wing of the Islamic Jihad Movement.

One of the main revelations in the Israeli captive’s statement is what many have already realized by now,  that the Israeli army is not seeking to save their lives, but rather to do the exact opposite. “They are seeking to kill us,” he said in a video statement.

“The (Israeli) government and (Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu are looking for us to kill us and bring us back as corpses; it is a cheap and preferred option for them,” Trufanov added.

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“I want to say that my situation is good, I am healthy, and this despite that the Israeli military and air force tried to kill me numerous times,” the Israeli captive also said.

Trufanov called on the citizens of Israel and protesters to “do everything you can to bring down this government so that another government that values our release before anything can rise as soon as possible.”

Israel’s Rejection

On May 6,  Hamas politburo chief, Ismail Haniyeh informed the negotiators that the Hamas had announced its acceptance of a ceasefire proposal for the besieged Gaza Strip.

Hamas later said that the necessary measures “to ensure the implementation of the agreement were also reviewed after the movement made its decision out of concern for our people and their supreme interests.”

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“It is now on the occupation to seize the moment and agree to the proposal presented,” the statement added.

However, Israel rejected the deal and decided instead to go ahead with the invasion of the southern Gaza city of Rafah. 

Gaza Genocide

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7. 

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 36,224 Palestinians have been killed, and 81,777 wounded in Israel’s ongoing genocide in Gaza starting on October 7.

Moreover, at least 7,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip. 

Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

The Israeli war has resulted in an acute famine, mostly in northern Gaza, resulting in the death of many Palestinians, mostly children. 

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The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba. 

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire’.

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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