Israeli Army Recovers Another 3 Bodies of Hostages in Gaza

Israeli Army Recovers Another 3 Bodies of Hostages in Gaza
This combo photo shows from (L–R) Michel Nisenbaum, 59, Hanan Yablonka, 42, and Oryon Hernandez Radoux, 30. (Hostages Families Forum Headquarters via AP)

JERUSALEM—The Israeli military said on Friday it had recovered the bodies of three more hostages taken into the Gaza Strip after they were killed during the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas terrorists.

It said the bodies of Hanan Yablonka, Michel Nisenbaum, and Orion Hernandez Radoux were recovered overnight in a joint operation by the army and the intelligence services in Jabalia, in northern Gaza where there has been intense fighting in recent days.

Military spokesperson Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari said Israel was determined to bring back the remaining hostages still held in Gaza.

“We will not stop fighting for their freedom,” he said in a televised statement, announcing the recovery of the three bodies. “Every decent country would do the same.”

Yablonka, 42, and Hernandez Radoux, 30, were both killed at the Nova music festival, an outdoor party near Gaza where Hernandez Radoux’s girlfriend, Shani Louk was also killed, the military said. Her body was recovered with two others last week. Nisenbaum, 65, was killed while going to take care of his granddaughter.

Hernandez Radoux held French nationality. President Emmanuel Macron said in a post on X, formerly Twitter, that he had learned of the death with sadness.

“I think of his family and those close to him. We are at their side. France remains more than ever committed to the release of all the hostages.”

The bodies were identified by medical officials at the Israeli National Forensic Institute and the Israeli police, the military said.

The Families Forum, a group that represents families of the hostages, called on the government to increase efforts for an agreement to get back the remaining hostages still held in Gaza.

“The recovery of their bodies is a silent but resolute reminder that the State of Israel is obligated to immediately dispatch negotiation teams with a clear demand to bring about a deal that will swiftly return all the hostages home: the living for rehabilitation and the murdered for burial,” it said in a statement.

Talks brokered by Qatar and Egypt to secure a ceasefire and hostage deal have stalled. Israel says it is willing to negotiate only a temporary pause to the fighting, while Hamas says it will release hostages only as part of a deal that would end the war with Israeli withdrawal from Gaza.

Hamas terrorists abducted around 250 Israeli and foreign hostages and killed 1,200 people during the attack on communities around the Gaza Strip on Oct 7, according to Israeli tallies. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has declared securing their return as one of Israel’s main war aims.

Around 130 hostages remain after a deal that secured the release of around half of them in November. Many of those still in Gaza are believed to be dead.

In response to the Oct. 7 attack, Israel launched a war against Hamas in Gaza in which the Hamas-controlled Gaza health ministry claims more than 35,000 Palestinians have been killed. The number does not distinguish between combatants and civilians.

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