The fate of the Bibas family weighs heavy on the mind of the nation of Israel after they were not released as part of the 7-day truce between Israel and the Hamas terrorists who kidnapped them.
Video footage showing the capture of Shiri Bibas, a 32-year-old Israeli mother, looking terrified while holding her two young children, 4-year-old Ariel, and then 9-month-old Kfir, has become a powerful symbol of the cruelty of the terrorists who attacked Israel's southern border communities on Oct. 7.
Hamas is also believed to have abducted Shiri’s husband, Yarden, and to be holding him separately from his wife and children.
The fate of the family remains unclear after Hamas claimed that Shiri and her children were killed in an Israeli airstrike.
“We can’t confirm at this stage what Hamas said, and I’d be very cautious in accepting anything that Hamas says to begin with. Of course, you know, we’re utilizing our intelligence in order to try and determine their situation. I don’t have anything to report at this stage,” IDF Spokesman Lt.-Col. Peter Lerner recently told The Media Line.
The day after claiming that Shiri, Ariel and Kfir had been killed in an Israeli airstrike, Hamas released a video showing Yarden reacting to the news of his family’s alleged death while reading a clearly-scripted statement.
Israeli authorities are investigating Hamas' claim, as the terror organization has a history of using psychological warfare against Israel and its citizens by publishing false information.
For example, some hostages whom Hamas previously claimed were dead, later emerged alive during the recent hostage deal.
Yossi Schneider, a cousin of Shiri Bibas, said that his family has not received any information about their family's physical condition: “We don't know if they are alive or wounded. Yarden was wounded when he was abducted.”
The IDF reportedly believes the Bibas family is being held in the town of Khan Younis, the current focus of the army’s ground operation, and hope remains that the two redheaded brothers and their family soon return home.
The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.