Israeli prime minister confirms citizen captured by Hamas in Gaza is alive

Published: Updated:
Enable Read mode
100% Font Size

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu confirmed on Tuesday that an Israeli citizen held by Hamas in the Gaza Strip was alive, a day after the Palestinian militant group released a video showing the man appealing for help.

For the latest headlines, follow our Google News channel online or via the app.

On Monday Hamas released footage showing Avera Mengistu, an Israeli said by his family to be suffering from mental health problems and who has been held by Hamas since he crossed into Gaza in 2014.

“Yesterday we received confirmation of what we knew this whole time, that Avera is alive,” Netanyahu said on Tuesday. “This is a young man, not in good health and the responsibility of his fate lies entirely on Hamas.”

The video, showing Mengistu seated in front of a blank wall and appealing to Israel for help, was the first image shown of him since his capture but there was no immediate official confirmation from Israel that the footage was genuine.

However his brother Ilan said the family believed it was.

“My mother is on the verge of tears. She hasn’t stopped watching the video,” he told Reuters on Monday. “Her hope, her great happiness will be seeing him home safe and sound.”

Read more:

Gaza says Israel not allowing in enough X-ray machines for medical care

People in Gaza turn to firewood as high gas prices and power cuts become the norm

Gaza Christians say travel curbs separate families at Christmas

Top Content Trending