June 13, 2024
Gaza War: 2 more hostages freed; air strikes intensified
TEL AVIV - Israel freed two hostages held by Hamas militants in Rafah on Monday, but supporting airstrikes killed at least 67 Palestinians in the southern Gaza city where about 1 million displaced civilians have sought refuge from four months of bombardments.

Israel’s military, the Shin Bet security service and a special police unit said they rescued two men — Fernando Simon Marman, 60, and Louis Har, 70 — who held dual Israeli-Argentine citizenship. The two were among the 240 or so hostages seized by Hamas in the militants’ October terror attack on Israel that killed 1,200 people and triggered Israel’s counter-offensive.

In the Gaza Strip, 1.4 million civilians have already fled to in order to escape the war.

Residents described heavy bombing, with the Israeli strikes hitting several houses and mosques.

The Israeli military said it struck “terror targets” in part of Rafah, and that the strikes coincided with a mission that rescued two Israeli hostages

An Israeli government spokesperson said on Monday that Hamas had been reduced to half its fighting force in the Gaza war, with more than 12,000 gunmen who have been killed and large numbers wounded or captured.

"We're talking about three-quarters of Hamas' battalions that have been shattered ... with over 12,000 terrorists who have been killed," Eylon Levy said in a briefing carried by the Jerusalem Post.

"When you take into account the number of terrorists who have been wounded or apprehended, that is more than half of Hamas' fighting force knocked out of action."


Story Date: February 13, 2024
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