February 20, 2024 | Flash Brief

Israel Releases Seized Footage of Bibas Family Kidnapped by Hamas

February 20, 2024 | Flash Brief

Israel Releases Seized Footage of Bibas Family Kidnapped by Hamas

Latest Developments

Israel on February 19 released footage from a Gaza street camera of a mother and her two young children being kidnapped by Hamas on October 7. The footage of the Bibas family showed four-year-old Ariel, nine-month-old Kfir, and their mother, Shiri, accompanied by armed Hamas terrorists. Hamas kidnapped the father, Yarden, separately. “Based on the information available to us, we are very concerned and worried about the condition and well-being of Shiri and the children, and we are making every effort to obtain more information about their fate. We will not rest or be silent until we bring them back home,” said Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari, spokesperson for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). Hamas continues to hold 134 hostages in Gaza.

Expert Analysis

“The footage of the Bibas family once again illustrates the criminal terrorist methods of Hamas and its attack on Israel on October 7. Hamas targeted children and families for kidnapping as it massacred Israelis during the attack. Hamas refused to release the Bibas family as part of the agreement in November that saw a pause in fighting in Gaza. Hamas must release all 134 hostages.” — Seth J. Frantzman, FDD Adjunct Fellow

“The Israeli military has every reason to be concerned about the condition of the Bibas family. Hamas and its partners in the Gaza Strip have, time and again, published outright lies about the condition of the hostages for propaganda purposes. Nevertheless, the return of all the captives and the surrender of Hamas are the best outcome for Israel and innocent civilians in Gaza.” Joe Truzman, Senior Research Analyst at FDD’s Long War Journal

Footage of Family Held by Hamas Shows Them in Gaza

Adm. Hagari said that Israeli forces “located footage from a street camera in Khan Yunis, in which Shiri, Ariel, and Kfir can be identified on the day of the kidnapping, as they arrived in Khan Yunis.” The IDF concluded that the video is from around 10:00 a.m. on October 7 and that an all-terrain vehicle brought the family to Gaza. “From there, they were transferred to another pickup truck that took them to the eastern part of the Khan Yunis area, to a post of the terrorist organization known as ‘Kataeb Al-Mujahidin,’” Adm. Hagari said. Kataeb Al-Mujahidin is the Arabic name of the Mujahideen Brigades, which the United States listed as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) group in 2018.

Hamas claimed in December that Shiri and the two children had been killed, and refused to release them as part of the hostage deal agreed between Israel and Hamas the previous month. Hamas also released a video of the father, Yarden, in December. “These videos tear our hearts out,” the Bibas family’s relatives said in a statement on February 19. “Witnessing Shiri, Yarden, Ariel and Kfir, ripped away from their home in Nir Oz into this hellscape, feels unbearable and inhumane.”

Qatar: Ceasefire in Gaza Should Not Depend on Hostage Deal,” FDD Flash Brief

Unless Hamas Releases Hostages, Israel to Push into Rafah During Ramadan,” FDD Flash Brief

Hamas Claims Three Members of Hostage Family Killed,” FDD Flash Brief


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