Two Israeli hostages rescued in overnight operation in Rafah

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Surinder Singh Oberoi
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Fernando Simon Marman, 60, and Louis Har, 70 (PHOTO: BringThemHome website)

Fernando Simon Marman, 60, and Louis Har, 70 (PHOTO: BringThemHome website)

New Delhi: Israeli forces have rescued two hostages from Kibbutz Nir Yitzhak in Rafah during a daring overnight mission. The operation carried out in cooperation with the IDF, ISA, and Israeli Police, led to the liberation of Fernando Simon Marman (60) and Louis Har (70), as confirmed by an announcement from the IDF on Twitter.

Both hostages are reported to be in good medical condition and have been swiftly transferred for further medical checks in Israel.

While details of the operation remain undisclosed, Defence Minister Yoav Gallant hailed its success, describing it as "impressive" and underscoring Israel's commitment to rescuing abducted citizens.

The rescue comes amidst heightened tensions in the region, with warnings of a potential humanitarian crisis looming. Israel is contemplating an offensive in Rafah, a densely populated city in southern Gaza where over 1.3 million displaced persons are residing alongside the local population.

Israeli airstrikes have intensified in Rafah, adding to concerns about the safety of civilians in the area. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered preparations for the potential evacuation of over a million residents, many of whom have already been displaced multiple times and have nowhere else to go.

The proposed offensive has drawn criticism from global leaders, including Saudi Arabia, the UAE, the UK, the EU, the Netherlands, and the UN, who have all expressed serious concerns about the humanitarian consequences.

US President Joe Biden has urged Netanyahu to prioritize the protection of civilians in Rafah and to devise a credible plan to ensure their safety.

Despite international calls for restraint, Netanyahu has affirmed Israel's intention to proceed with the offensive, citing ongoing preparations for the operation.

The escalation in tensions follows a deadly attack on October 7th, in which Hamas militants infiltrated Israeli territory, resulting in the deaths of 1,200 civilians and the abduction of approximately 240 individuals. In response, Israel launched military operations in the Gaza Strip, resulting in over 28,000 Palestinian casualties and widespread destruction.

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