Gaza: Israel is trying to locate the hostages taken by Hamas in its surprise attack on October 7 by dropping leaflets in the Gaza Strip, urging the residents to cooperate and provide any useful information. The leaflets, which are also accompanied by flares, promise that those who help will receive security and financial rewards from the Israeli army.
The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) posted a message on X, a social media platform, saying that they had used various methods to contact the people of Gaza and ask for their assistance in finding the hostages. “If you want to live in peace and have a better future for your children, then act immediately and humanely and share reliable and valuable information about the hostages in your area,” the message said. “The IDF guarantees you that it will do its utmost to protect you and your home, and you will receive a monetary reward. We assure you of complete confidentiality.”
According to Israel, Hamas is holding about 220 people hostage, including 20 children and 10 to 20 elderly people. Some of them have been identified by their families in videos released by Hamas, showing them being taken away by gunmen or held in captivity. On Monday, Hamas released two elderly hostages, bringing the total number of freed Israelis to four.
Meanwhile, the humanitarian situation in Gaza is worsening as Israel has closed its borders and prevented the entry of food, water, medicine, and fuel. About 2.3 million people in Gaza are facing shortages of basic necessities and living under constant threat of Israeli airstrikes. On Monday, a small convoy of trucks entered Gaza to deliver some essential goods, but the UN said that this was not enough and that more aid was needed urgently.
The UN also said that without fuel, the aid deliveries would soon stop as the trucks inside Gaza would not be able to operate. The lack of fuel has also affected the health sector, as hospitals are struggling to provide care for the wounded and the sick. Electricity is scarce and vital equipment such as incubators for newborn babies are not functioning properly. Israel said on Tuesday that it had carried out 400 airstrikes in the last 24 hours, killing many Hamas commanders and fighters.