The father of one of three Israeli hostages accidentally killed by the IDF in Gaza mourned and lashed out at Israel’s leaders on Tuesday.
Avi Shamriz’s son, Alon, was killed along with two other Israeli hostages after they apparently escaped from Hamas custody and tried to surrender to Israeli forces. IDF forces mistook them for Hamas terrorists and opened fire.
“I will say this [to] the government. You murdered my son twice,” the distraught father told NBC News. “You allowed Hamas to take my son on October 7th and you killed my son on December 14th.”
Shamriz’s message comes as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faces mounting pressure to engage in another round of hostage negotiations with Hamas. Israel believes there are more than 100 hostages still in custody, although it is unclear how many of them remain alive.
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Senior members of Netanyahu’s government have accepted responsibility for the lack of vigilance that allowed the October 7 massacre. His government maintains that the war in Gaza must continue, lest Hamas make good on its promises to repeat its atrocities.
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“They don’t think about the hostages. They don’t think about us,” Shamriz said of Netanyahu’s government. “They only think about themselves.
Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant has warned that the war against Hamas is likely to last many more months. US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin visited Israel on Monday to urge Israel to scale back its war beyond the end of December.
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President Biden’s administration is also pushing Israel to reopen hostage negotiations with Hamas in Qatar. CIA Director William Burns and Mossad chief David Barnea met in Qatar earlier this week, but there was little progress toward a new deal.
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Hamas terrorists broke off the initial swap deal in early December, launching a series of attacks and refusing to hand over some hostages.