Israel-Hamas war: Went ‘through hell’ during kidnap, treated well later, says 85-year-old freed hostage
An elderly Israeli woman, who was among the two hostages freed by Hamas last night, recalled her experience of two weeks of captivity while speaking to reporters in Tel Aviv. The 85-year-old said she “went through hell" while being kidnapped, but was treated well later, BBC reported.
The women, identified as Yocheved Lifshitz, was freed by the Palestinian militant group on “humanitarian grounds", even as reports claimed that around 220 Israelis are still held as hostages in Gaza.
Lifshitz, while responding to media queries a day after her release, said she suffered bruises as she was kidnapped on a motorbike from her kibbutz in southern Israel on the morning of October 7.
However, the captors later treated her well and ensured that a doctor visited the hostages to check their condition at every 2-3 days, she told reporters.
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Lifshitz noted that condition of the rooms where the hostages were kept was clean, and the guards took efforts to take care of "every detail", the BBC report said. The elderly woman also claimed that she, along with the other hostages, were offered white cheese and cucumber to eat – the same as what the captors were eating, the report added.
Lifshitz, seated in a wheelchair, was accompanied at the press conference by her daughter Sharone, who just returned from London to Tel Aviv. Sharone said that the Hamas militants told her mother that they "believed in the Quran" and would not hurt her.
Sharone also claimed that her mother saw a “huge network" of underground tunnels used by Hamas, which were akin to “spider's web".
Hamas, in a statement on October 7, said they had taken captives to seek the release of Palestinians who are lodged in Israeli prisons.
The group, on the morning of October 7, had carried out raids and fired thousands of rockets towards Israel. While it claimed that it had targeted military installations, the Israeli government noted that those among the 1,400 persons killed in their attack includes civilians.
In response, Israel has launched a spree of bombings in the besieged Gaza Strip over the past two weeks, leading to the death of over 4,500 persons. According to the Gaza Health Ministry, over 1,500 among those killed are children.