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Israeli First Lady Herzog blasts international organization’s silence over Hamas mass rapes

Israeli First Lady Michal Herzog with the families of abductees held by Hamas (Photo: Israel's President Residence)

The First Lady of Israel, Michal Herzog, blasted international bodies for their silence over the Hamas mass rapes committed against Israeli women during the terror group's brutal surprise attack on Oct. 7.

In her Newsweek magazine op-ed, released on Wednesday, the first lady noted that she hosts numerous scholars and civil society leaders each year who officially work to strengthen women’s rights worldwide.

However, she stressed that the widespread silence over Hamas’ mass assaults on Israeli women seriously undermined her faith in international women’s rights organizations.

“But this year will be different. Many things changed on October 7 when thousands of Hamas terrorists massacred Israeli families, burnt children and the elderly, and kidnapped hostages,” she wrote in an opinion article entitled, 'The Silence From International Bodies Over Hamas' Mass Rapes Is a Betrayal of All Women.'

"This deeply impacted our visceral understanding of the cruelty of gender-based sexual violence—and our faith in the international organizations that claim to care about women,” Herzog added. “The silence of international human rights organizations, and the unwillingness to believe Israeli women in the face of overwhelming evidence has been devastating.”

First Lady Michal Herzog, the wife of Israeli President Isaac Herzog, stressed that one of the Jewish state’s leading women's rights champions shared her disappointment with international women’s rights bodies.

“For the Israelis who have always been on the forefront of the fight for women's rights worldwide, this was a moment of crushing disappointment. A disappointment shared with me by one of our most prominent women's rights advocates, Prof. Ruth Halperin-Kaddari, a former CEDAW vice-chair.”

“To mark this year's International Day for the Prevention of Violence against Women, Israeli women – Jews, Muslims, Christians, and Druze – will gather at the President's Residence in Jerusalem. We will meet in the lingering shock of the violation of our rights, and with the profound sense that all of us who believe in those rights have been betrayed,” the first lady wrote.

Investigators from the Israel Police are currently building legal rape cases against Hamas terrorists who participated in the mass slaughter of Israeli civilians on Oct. 7.

The investigation of Hamas’ sexual violence against Israeli women is part of a wider effort to map the unprecedented war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by Hamas and its civilian accomplices in southern Israel. The investigation is complicated by the magnitude of the crimes and the severe conditions of the victim's bodies.

“Many of the victims were in conditions too severe to identify, naked and with clear signs of sexual assault,” reads a description of graphic clips with mutilated naked female corpses.

Israeli Police Commissioner Kobi Shabtai also noted that many victims in Israel are still too traumatized to speak about Hamas’ atrocities.

“Many of the victims who survived the massacres are not ready to speak,” Shabtai stated.

On Oct. 7, Hamas terror operatives spread death and destruction among some 20 different Israeli towns and villages, mostly close to the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip.

A new project called “Mapping the Massacres” seeks to educate the Israeli and international public on what happened on Oct. 7 by displaying interactive maps of the area.

“This interactive map serves as a reflection and an educational tool, promoting awareness of the gravity of the horrors,” according to the website.

Survivor stories and eyewitness accounts can also be accessed at

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

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