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IDF confirms the deaths of 4 hostages taken by Hamas on Oct 7

Circumstances of deaths are being investigated 'thoroughly'

(L-R) Amiram Cooper, Chaim Peri, Yoram Metzger, Nadav Popplewell (Photo courtesy)

The IDF on Monday night confirmed the deaths of four Israeli hostages during Hamas captivity. 

The four hostages are Chaim Peri (79), Yoram Metzger (80) and Amiram Cooper( 84) from Nir Oz, and Nadav Popplewell (51) from Nirim. Their bodies are still being held by Hamas. 

The IDF believes all four were being held together in the Khan Younis area before their deaths. 

“We estimate that the four were killed together, in the Khan Younis area, several months ago, while being held by Hamas terrorists and while IDF forces were operating in Khan Younis,” IDF spokesman Brig.-Gen. Daniel Hagari said in the press conference. 

“The IDF and other security agencies continue to use a variety of methods to gather information about the remaining hostages in Gaza,” Hagari stated. “We will persist in our efforts and continue to support the families of the abductees until all are returned home.” 

Hagari stated that the determination of the hostages' deaths was based on comprehensive intelligence information gathered by multiple agencies and was approved by a committee of representatives from the Israeli Health Ministry, the Ministry of Religion and the Chief Rabbi.

Hagari said the IDF would thoroughly investigate the circumstances surrounding the deaths of hostages and promised the findings would be released “transparently." 

In March, Hamas released a psychological warfare video claiming that IDF airstrikes were responsible for the deaths of Peri, Metzger and Cooper. This statement was released after they appeared alive in a previous propaganda video in December. 

A video released in May allegedly showed Popplewell after he had already been killed. 

“I know that difficult questions will arise regarding the circumstances of the deaths,” Hagari said. “We are examining the circumstances of death in-depth, looking into all possibilities, and we will present the findings as soon as possible, firstly to the families and then to the public.” 

The Hostage Families Forum issued a statement following the public confirmation that the four men had perished.

“The painful news should shake every citizen in the State of Israel and compel every leader to engage in deep soul-searching,” the statement read. “Chaim, Yoram, Amiram, and Nadav were abducted alive and had to return alive to their country and their families.” 

The group demanded that the Israeli government approve the ceasefire agreement being considered right now. 

“Their murder in captivity is a disgrace and reflects the cost of delaying previous deals. We demand the Israeli government approve the Netanyahu deal immediately.” 

The IDF has now confirmed the deaths of 41 of the remaining 120 hostages abducted by Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorists during the Oct. 7 invasion and attack.

The total number of Israeli hostages stands at 124, including the bodies of fallen IDF soldiers Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin, killed during Operation Protective Edge in 2014, and two civilians Avera Mengistu and Hisham al-Sayed, who both entered Gaza on their own in 2014 and 2015, respectively.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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