Today: 19-04-2024

Ongoing Updates on the Israel-Hamas Conflict: Freed Hostage Describes Hamas Trials

What We Know:

Hamas has released two more hostages, giving hope to the families of over 200 individuals still held captive in the Gaza Strip, as international pressure mounts for their release. One of the recently released Israelis shared her ordeal in Hamas captivity, describing it as hellish. The U.S. is advising Israel to delay a ground invasion of Gaza to allow more time for negotiations for hostage release and humanitarian aid. In recent days, Israeli military forces have intensified airstrikes. Yesterday evening, President Joe Biden called on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to support the "urgently needed" aid flow. Healthcare officials have warned that much more aid is required, and according to UN estimates, 100 trucks per day are needed to meet the basic needs of the civilian population. Global diplomatic efforts to de-escalate the conflict continue: Western leaders are visiting Israel as clashes on the Lebanese border and actions by Iran-backed forces heighten fears of escalation. NBC News' Richard Engel, Raf Sanchez, Kelly Cobiella, Josh Lederman, Matt Bradley, Allison Barber, Megan Fitzgerald, Jay Gray, Hala Gorani, Chantal da Silva, and Alexander Smith report from the region.

One of the two hostages released by Hamas yesterday shared her experience with reporters at a hospital in Tel Aviv, describing how she endured a "hell" after being captured by militants who attacked her kibbutz.

85-year-old Yohaved Lifshitz recounted her capture and time spent in captivity, during which, she says, she was treated well.

Speaking from a hospital, Lifshitz, who sat in a wheelchair beside her daughter, was surrounded by media representatives.

"I went through hell," Lifshitz said, referring to her ordeal. She was released along with 79-year-old Nurit Cooper. "We never thought or knew that we could find ourselves in such a situation."

She provided a detailed account of how she was put on a motorcycle, taken to Gaza, beaten with sticks, and then transported through a network of tunnels in the Gaza Strip.

However, Lifshitz also mentioned that she received medical care and was treated well during her captivity.