All Israel

Israeli families of remaining 134 hostages feel abandoned 150 days after their loved ones were abducted by Hamas terrorists

Families of Israeli hostages held by Hamas in Gaza at a Knesset Health Committee meeting, on March 4, 2024. (Photo: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

The families of the remaining Israeli hostages attended a special event at the Israeli Knesset building in Jerusalem on Monday to mark 150 days since their loved ones were brutally kidnapped by Hamas terrorists who invaded southern Israel.

The families were understandably distraught and told lawmakers that they feel abandoned, with no apparent end in sight to bringing their loved ones back home. In addition, many family members also complained that government officials appeared indifferent to their personal needs and suffering.

Nisan Kalderon, whose brother Ofer is being held hostage by terrorists in Gaza, blasted the Israeli government's conduct.

"One hundred and fifty days and not one representative of the government of Israel has called or spoken to me," Kalderon said.

"I said two weeks ago that I would kill myself because I am suffocating. I don't eat, I am going crazy and cannot sleep. I take sleeping pills," he added.

Kalderon compared the indifference of Israeli politicians to the situation now versus during election season.

"'Are you alive?', 'Do you need help?' That is all that was needed. One call. At the time of elections we are inundated with text messages," he added with bitterness.

Some families are struggling with permanent tragedy that no government action can rectify. Osnat, whose nephew Itai Svirski was kidnapped by Hamas and later murdered in Gaza, also lost her sister and brother-in-law during the Hamas Oct. 7 massacres.

"We are bereaved families, abducted, evacuated, take your pick. My mother's house was used as a command post by Hamas. Her caregiver was murdered, my sister and brother-in-law were murdered, Itai was murdered," Osnat said.

Itai was initially featured in a Hamas propaganda video and his fate had remained unclear until January, when his hometown at Kibbutz Be’eri declared that he and fellow Israeli hostage Yossi Sharabi had been murdered during their captivity in Gaza.

“Their bodies are in the hands of Hamas, we demand their return with the rest of our abductees. Our hearts are with the families in their immense pain. May they rest in peace,” the kibbutz announced in an official statement.

In many cases, the trauma of Oct. 7 has continued even after their loved ones returned home.

Chen Avigdori, whose wife and daughter were released from Hamas captivity in November, is still suffering from the traumatic experience when he was unsure whether he would ever see his wife and child again.

"I am speaking about myself. Sleep disorder – check, giving up a healthy lifestyle – check, I am smoking more cigarettes and grass. I've lost 8 kilos (17 lbs.) and have not seen a doctor. I have lost the ability to work. Everything you have seen – I have experienced and I am a father and husband who waited to see them released. This is too big for you. It's the bureaucracy. Something else must be done," Avigdori assessed.

International diplomatic efforts to secure the release of the remaining Israeli hostages in Gaza have continued.

Israel has signaled its readiness for a temporary pause in fighting, the increase of humanitarian aid into Gaza and the release of an undisclosed number of convicted Palestinian terrorists in exchange for the hostages.

However, Hamas has refused to provide a list of the Israeli hostages who are still alive. In addition, Hamas is demanding a permanent ceasefire to the war it unleashed on Israel when it massacred more than 1,200 Israelis and kidnapped around 250 people on Oct. 7.

The Jewish state has dismissed agreeing to a permanent ceasefire and vowed to dismantle Hamas as a military and political force. Israel accuses Hamas chief Yahya Sinwar of deliberately undermining the hostage deal in order to inflame the Middle East region ahead of the upcoming Muslim Ramadan holiday.

“There is a clear picture here: Sinwar made a decision that in Ramadan he wants chaos and bloodshed instead of humanitarian aid, peace and a ceasefire for his population,” one Israeli official stated.

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

All Israel
Receive latest news & updates
    A message from All Israel News
    Help us educate Christians on a daily basis about what is happening in Israel & the Middle East and why it matters.
    For as little as $5, you can support ALL ISRAEL NEWS, a non-profit media organization that is supported by readers like you.
    Donate to ALL ISRAEL NEWS
    Popular Articles
    Latest Stories