In brief interviews, four women spoke of their fear, hunger and lack of sleep during their captivity after being kidnapped during the unprecedented Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israeli soil, which sparked the war.
Around 1,200 people were killed during this attack, the majority civilians, according to the authorities, and 240 others were kidnapped and taken to the Gaza Strip, in the hands of Hamas.
“Our daughters saw things that children of this age, or any age, should not see,” said Danielle Aloni, 45, released on November 24 with her five-year-old daughter.
“Food was not abundant, and as time passed, there was less of it,” said Ditza Heiman, 84, who was released Tuesday.
The freed hostages urged Benjamin Netanyahu’s government to take all necessary measures to secure the release of the hostages.
“The moral obligation of this government is to bring them home immediately, without hesitation,” said Yocheved Lifschitz, 85, who was released in October.
The broadcast of these testimonies comes the day after the end of the seven-day truce between Israel and Hamas which allowed the release of 80 Israeli hostages in exchange for 240 Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli prisons.
Israeli bombardments resumed on Friday on the Gaza Strip, from where Hamas rockets were fired onto Israeli soil.
“We must bring back my Sasha and the rest” of the detainees, Elena Trupanov, a hostage released on Wednesday, said during the rally in Tel Aviv, referring to her son, still hostage.
The families want to put even more pressure on the authorities for the release of their loved ones since the Israeli army confirmed the death of five hostages on Friday.
Israeli army spokesman Daniel Hagari said Saturday that 137 Israelis and foreigners were still captive in the Palestinian territory, which Israel is subjecting to a “complete siege” after 16 years of blockade and where humanitarian needs are immense.
According to the Hamas government, more than 15,000 people, including more than 6,150 under the age of 18, have died in Israeli strikes since the start of hostilities.