Home News Israeli military says three rescued hostages held at Hamas member’s home

Israeli military says three rescued hostages held at Hamas member’s home

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Following Israel’s rescue of four hostages in Gaza on Saturday, the Israeli military said three of them were being held in the home of a Hamas member, suggesting the militant group is using civilian homes to conceal its activities.

Israeli special forces, backed by the army, intelligence and air force, raided two buildings in a neighborhood of Nusserat, a refugee camp in central Gaza, on Saturday, rescuing Almog Meir Jan, 22, Andrei Kozlov, 27, and Shlomi Ziv, 41, from the home of Abdullah Al Jamal, the Israeli military said. A fourth hostage, Noah Al Gamani, 26, was also rescued, reportedly from a nearby building.

According to the Gaza Health Ministry, the death toll from the attacks exceeded 274. The Israeli military said the death toll was less than 100. Neither the Israeli military nor Palestinian health officials provided specific figures on the number of civilians and combatants killed in the attacks.

The Gaza government press office confirmed Al-Jamal’s death on Sunday, saying he had worked for the Hamas-affiliated Palestine Today news agency.

“The hostages are being held at home by Abdullah Al-Jamal and his family,” the Israeli military said in a statement on the Telegram messaging app on Sunday. Further evidence The Hamas terrorist organization deliberately uses civilian homes and buildings to hold Israeli hostages in the Gaza Strip.”

The Israeli military has said for months that civilian casualties in Gaza are inevitable because Hamas hides its forces among Gaza civilians.

However, the Israeli military on Monday appeared to retract a suggestion made the previous day on the X platform (formerly Twitter) that Mr. Al-Jamal A A journalist for Al Jazeera, an influential news organization based in Qatar.

The military posted a screenshot of what appeared to be a photo and a brief biography of Ajmal from the news agency’s website. “No media coverage can prove his innocence of the crimes he committed,” the post said, adding: “Al Jazeera: What is this terrorist doing on your website?”

Al Jazeera on Sunday refuted the allegations, calling them “completely without basis” and saying Ajmal “never worked for the network”. Instead, the network said he had contributed to a column in 2019. A search for his byline on the Al Jazeera website reveals a co-authored commentary Beginning in January of that year, testimonies were collected from six Palestinians held in Israeli prisons.News organizations often publish opinion pieces by non-staff writers who do not have an ongoing contractual relationship with the journalists.

Al Jazeera is a major source of news in the Arab world and has reported on the suffering of civilians in Gaza. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused Al Jazeera of endangering Israel’s security and inciting violence against Israeli soldiers. Al Jazeera has been temporarily banned from operating in Israel since May 5. Critics denounced the unusual move as anti-democratic and part of Israel’s broader crackdown on dissidents in the Hamas war in Gaza.

Israel imposes 35-day ban on Al Jazeera operations 45 days extension Last Wednesday, Israel’s cabinet agreed that Al Jazeera’s broadcasts posed a security threat.

On Monday, the Israeli military said it had no comment on Al Jazeera’s rebuttal and referred a New York Times reporter to the newspaper’s Sunday Telegraph post, which only identified Jamal as a member of Hamas. However, the Israeli Foreign Ministry continued to highlight the allegation that Jamal had links to Al Jazeera and on Monday retweeted a New York Post report that cited the Israeli military’s Sunday post about X.

It was not possible to independently ascertain whether the hostages were being held at Mr. Ajmal’s home and, if so, under what circumstances.

Given that Abdallah Aljamal is a relatively common name in Gaza, it is unclear whether the author of the op-ed is the person who owns the residence that the Israeli military says is being used to hold hostages.

according to Preliminary estimates The Committee to Protect Journalists said that Israel’s military operations in the Gaza Strip have killed more than 100 journalists and media workers since Hamas launched an attack on Israel on October 7. The committee called this an unprecedented loss for Palestinian journalists.

Israeli officials have said they believe some of the journalists are also members of Hamas, a claim that casts doubt on the neutrality of the reporting by Palestinian journalists. Foreign media are banned from entering the enclave In addition to the special patrols closely monitored by the military, Palestinian journalists have become an important source of information about the progress of the war and its impact on civilians.

Alan Boxman Contributed reporting.

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