Israeli woman Yocheved Lifschitz, 85, released by Hamas recalls days in captivity

Two Israeli women were freed by Hamas on Monday evening

Israeli-woman-rekeased-by-hamas-reuters Yocheved Lifschitz, 85, an Israeli grandmother who was held hostage in Gaza looks on after being released by Hamas militants, at Ichilov Hospital in Tel Aviv | Reuters

 ‘Been through hell,’ recalls Yocheved Lifschitz, 85, who was held hostage by Hamas in Gaza. Lifschitz and her husband Oded (83) was taken by Hamas on October 7 from Nir Oz kibbutz in the southern Israel. Lifschitz was captured and taken on a motorbike.

While speaking to the reporters outside a hospital in Tel Aviv, Lifschitz said she was beaten with sticks and forced to walk for few kilometers while been taken to Gaza. Was taken into tunnels covered with cobwebs, she added.

But she also recalled that the hostage keepers had treated her and rest of the hostages ‘more gently’.

Seated in a wheelchair, Lifschitz told mediapersons that a doctor had visited her while she was being held in a network of tunnels. “All my needs were taken care of,” said Lifschitz in Hebrew, which was translated by her daughter Sharone Lifschitz.

Though Lifschitz was released, her husband is yet to be freed by Hamas. She was freed along with another woman, Nurit Cooper, 79, on Monday evening.

While being released, Lifschitz had shook hands with the Hamas gunmen and said ‘Shalom’, in a gesture bidding goodbye. On being asked, the reason behind the gesture, she said that they were good to her when she was being held as a hostage.

Sharone said her mother was taken into “a huge network of tunnels underneath Gaza that it looked like a spider's web”, reported BBC.

So far, four hostages were released by Hamas. According to Israeli Defence Forces (IDF), around 200 hostages including foreigners were taken into Gaza.

Reportedly, Qatar is mediating with Hamas to release some of the hostages captured. The United States has also advised Israel to delay its ground attacks so that it would give more time for mediation to release the hostages. 

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