Elderly Israeli Hostage Released by Hamas, Says She Went Through ‘Hell’
An elderly Israeli hostage who was released by Hamas overnight said she had been beaten by terrorists as she was taken into Gaza on Oct. 7.
Yocheved Lifshitz, 85, was one of two women freed late on Monday, leaving around 220 hostages still in the hands of Hamas, the Palestinian terrorist group in control of Gaza.
“I’ve been through hell, we didn’t think or know we would get to this situation,” she told reporters, seated in a wheelchair outside the Tel Aviv hospital where she was taken following her release.
Looking frail, Lifshitz said she had been put on a motorbike and driven from her kibbutz into nearby Gaza.
“When I was on the bike, my head was on one side and the rest of my body on the other side. The young men hit me on the way. They didn’t break my ribs but it was painful and I had difficulty breathing.”
Once in Gaza, she said her captors took her into an “enormous spider web-like network of tunnels,” where she was forced to walk several kilometers. At some point the captors removed her watch and jewelry, Lifshitz recalled.
Lifshitz said she was treated well for the next two weeks, saying a doctor had visited her and made sure she and other hostages received the same sort of medicines they had been taking in Israel.
She said the Israeli military had not taken the threat of Hamas seriously enough, and that the costly security fence meant to keep terrorists out “didn’t help at all.”