Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Israeli army says four captives rescued amid heavy strikes on Gaza

(Al Jazeera Media Network) The Israeli military says its forces have rescued four captives from central Gaza as it escalated its assault across the besieged and bombarded territory.

The announcement about the raid in Nuseirat on Saturday came as Palestinian health officials said at least 210 people were killed and wounded in Israeli attacks on central Gaza. Local residents said Nuseirat had come under heavy Israeli drone and air raids, with children among those killed.

The army said the four captives – Noa Argamani, 25; Almog Meir Jan, 21; Andrey Kozlov, 27; and Shlomi Ziv; 40 – had been taken from a music festival during the attack Palestinian group Hamas led in southern Israel on October 7.

They were in “good medical condition” and were taken to hospital for medical checks following a “complex daytime operation”. They were rescued in two separate locations in the heart of Nuseirat, it said. Israeli police said commander Arnon Zamora was killed in the mission.

However, commenting later on Saturday, the spokesperson of Hamas’s Qassam Brigades, Abu Obaida, said that other captives had been killed during the rescue operation.

Saturday’s operation was the largest recovery of live captives since October 7, bringing the total of rescued captives to seven. Last week, the Israeli military had said that 120 captives remained in Gaza, including 41 that the army believed were dead.

Israeli Defence Minister Yoav Gallant said forces were “operating under heavy fire in the most complex urban environment in Gaza” when they rescued the captives.

He called the operation “one of the most heroic and extraordinary operations I have witnessed over the course of 47 years serving in Israel’s defence establishment.”




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