'Every Day Could Be Their Last': Hostage Families Speak Out At Tel Aviv Rally

By JPost
Posted on 12/02/23 | News Source: JPost

A huge rally took place in Tel Aviv on Saturday night, in front of the Kirya IDF base building. This event featured speeches from released hostages who survived Hamas's captivity. These survivors, along with their families, have urgently requested a meeting with the War Cabinet, advocating for the release of all hostages.

Hadas Calderon, whose children Sahar, 16, and Erez, 12, were recently released from captivity, expressed mixed emotions at the rally: "I am overwhelmed with joy and sadness. A miracle happened to me, and I pray the same for everyone else. I'm deeply moved to be here today, knowing that my beloved Ereziko and Saharki are safe at home. Their return has brought light and immense hope into my life. My very own superheroes have endured and made it back."

Calderon further described her children's experience: "They likened it [captivity] to the Fortnite war game, a game that transformed into a shocking reality, something beyond our wildest imaginations. Their first words to me were, 'Mom, you're alive, we didn't realize you were alive.' The harrowing uncertainty of who is alive or dead, and when this nightmare will end, haunts every hostage, leaving them in darkness and helplessness.

"Their testimonies are heart-wrenching and terrifying, marking an unprecedented journey through hell. It's an ordeal no child, man, woman, or person should ever endure."

Elena Trufanov, freed from captivity in Gaza, shared her relief and determination: "I am Sasha Trufanov's mother, and I stand here grateful and moved. Your support has been crucial; without it, I wouldn't be here. We must now focus on bringing back my Sasha and everyone else."

Also present at the rally was Yifat Zailer, cousin of Shiri Bibas, who was kidnapped with her young children, Ariel and Kfir, and her husband Yarden, a family which has become the symbol of this war. Zailer conveyed a powerful message from the Bibas family: 'We refuse to be broken by this ordeal," she said, countering Hamas's claim that Shiri and her children were killed.

"These past two months have been a rollercoaster of emotions, particularly the last two weeks. My nine-month-old son, born two months after Kfir, deserves to grow up with his cousin. Please, remember us and them. Continue to believe in the good; don't let anything pull you down. They will return home; everyone will return home."

The hostages' headquarters announced their demand for an immediate meeting with the War Cabinet on Saturday: "With the ceasefire ended and combat resumed, it's crucial to keep the captives' families informed. The clear and immediate danger to the lives of the captives leaves no room for doubt.

"Every day could be their last; we cannot abandon them," the families of the captives urged. "We are deeply concerned for the well-being of everyone still there. We call upon the Prime Minister and the War Cabinet to meet with us tonight and provide a roadmap for bringing everyone back home today," they implored.