Explained: How Many Hostages Hamas Has And What Are Israel's Options
Experts feel Israelis will not "forgive" their leader if ensuring hostages' safety, and rescuing them, is not a priority.
Hamas has threatened to execute one hostage every time Israel drops a bomb, without warning, on a Palestinian home in the Gaza Strip, Reuters said Tuesday, as the increasingly bloody war between the two sides rolls into a fourth day with no end in sight. The group has 150 hostages - including children and a Holocaust survivor - grabbed from border towns and kibbutzim in attacks that began early Saturday.
Hamas spokesperson Abu Ubaida said, "Every targeting of our people without warning will be met with the execution of one civilian hostage". AFP reported that four hostages have already died (it is unclear if they were Israelis or other nationals) but also that they were killed during Israeli air strikes.
The hostages present a significant problem for an Israeli government that has vowed to respond to Hamas' attacks with a "massive" assault and "unprecedented force"; Palestinians are bracing for a vicious response after Tel Aviv called up over three lakh soldiers, including reservists, ahead of a ground assault.
However, some experts feel Israelis will not "forgive" their leader if ensuring hostages' safety, and rescuing them, is not a priority. "The citizens' attitude would be 'you have failed to ensure our security, bring us the hostages back'," Sylvaine Bulle, a French sociologist studying Israel, told AFP.
Ms Bulle also predicted tension between politicians and the military if hostages were killed.
Will the Israel government risk public sentiment in its bid for revenge for Hamas' attacks?
According to Kobi Micheal, a researcher from the Tel-Aviv based Institute for National Security Studies, "Hostages cannot be first priority. With all the sorrow... Israel will (address the) hostage issue only (when it has) the upper hand and when Hamas (is) defeated... not a second before."
Reuters has also said Qatari mediators are negotiating the hostages' release in exchange for 36 Palestinian women and children being held in Israeli prisons. Qatar's Foreign Ministry confirmed to Reuters it is involved and sources told the news agency talks are "moving positively".
There are contradictory reports, though; Hamas sources in Qatar told AFP there is "currently no chance for negotiation on the issue of prisoners or anything else".
On Monday Mr Netanyahu declared war on Hamas and said, "Hamas terrorists bound, burned and executed children. They are savages. Hamas is ISIS..." Israel Defence Minister, Yoav Gallant, on Monday ordered a "complete siege" of Gaza; "No electricity, no food, no water, no gas..."
The Gaza Strip - 365 sq km large and home to 2.3 million people - is already one of the world's most locked-down places. It is also the third most densely populated space in the world.
Over 1,600 people have died, more than 6,000 have been injured since the war began on Saturday. Fifteen deaths have also been reported from the West Bank, where Palestinians clashed with Israeli forces. The United Nations has said over 1.3 lakh have been displaced so far.
In this explained.Live session, India’s former ambassador to Russia, D B Venkatesh Varma talks about the Russia-Ukraine conflict, whether it will be ending soon or not and what it means for India. The session was moderated by Shubhajit Roy, Deputy Chief of National Bureau Source: ‘The chances of nuclear use are minimal. Both Russia & Ukraine are well aware of results’: DB Venkatesh Varma | Explained News,The Indian Express
In what can be termed as “travesty of the fight against terror", Pakistan is free of the control of the world anti-money-laundering body, even the proposal for which, last week, had led to anger in New Delhi. The country sought removal from the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) Grey List, claiming it has “complied with 11 conditions”, including prevention of money laundering and terrorism financing, according to a top diplomatic source. Pakistan has been on the list since June 2018. Commenting on Pakistan’s move to get out of the FATF list, Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, in an exclusive interview with News18, said, “Our neighbour is not happy with peace in India…The world is watching which country is aiding terrorism…Our ministry of external affairs (MEA) is vigilant and takes appropriate action.” ALSO READ | Pakistan’s FATF ‘Grey’s Period’ to End? Islamabad Says Prevented Terror Financing; India Slams ‘White Lie’ | Exclusive News18 had reported on Octobe
According to a video of interrogation of "Hamas terrorists" released by Israel Security Agency Shin Bet, accessed exclusively by News18, "The Shifa hospital has been made with many considerations as Hamas knew that medical places won’t be attacked by the enemy. Equipment, explosives and other material has been kept there." Hamas is using hospitals in Gaza as covers and have turned them into ammunition depots, according to a video of interrogation of “Hamas terrorists" released by Israel Security Agency Shin Bet, accessed exclusively by News18. ALSO READ | Israel-Hamas War LIVE Updates HERE The Israeli military has claimed that those featuring in the video released on Saturday are Hamas terrorists, who participated in the October 7 attack on Israel. “Most of the tunnels are hidden in hospitals. There are multiple underground levels. Al-Shifa Hospital is not small, it is a big place that can be used to hide things," a man is seen saying. “The Al-Shifa