Israeli hostage families fight to keep spotlight on captives

October 30, 2023

The families said they had secured a commitment to give more frequent updates about efforts to release the captives, who are believed detained in Hamas underground tunnels. The Israeli military says it has confirmed that at least 239 hostages, including toddlers and elderly people, were seized on October 7. Gaza's Hamas-run health ministry says more than 8,000 people, including thousands of women and children, have been killed in Israeli air and ground strikes since. Levy said the Israeli army was "strong enough to overcome the contradiction between the military aims and the humanitarian". Hamas leaders have demanded the release of some 5,200 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, in exchange for the October 7 hostages.