Israeli military finds bodies of 3 hostages in Gaza

The hostages were identified as Shani Louk, 22; Amit Buskila, 28; and Itzhak Gelerenter, 56.
Posted at 12:38 PM, May 17, 2024

The Israeli military said Friday its troops in Gaza found the bodies of three Israeli hostages taken by Hamas during its Oct. 7 attack, including German-Israeli Shani Louk.

A photo of the 22-year-old’s twisted body in the back of a pickup truck ricocheted around the world and brought to light the scale of the militants’ attack on communities in southern Israel.

The military identified the other two bodies found as those of a 28-year-old woman, Amit Buskila, and a 56-year-old man, Itzhak Gelerenter. Military spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari said all three were killed by Hamas at the Nova music festival, an outdoor dance party near the Gaza border, and their bodies were taken into the Palestinian territory.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the deaths “heartbreaking,” saying, “We will return all of our hostages, both the living and the dead.”

Aerial view of a U.S.-built floating pier to be used for aid deliveries into the Gaza Strip.

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First aid shipment has been driven across newly built US pier into Gaza

AP via Scripps News
10:20 AM, May 17, 2024

The military did not give immediate details on where their bodies were found. Israel has been operating in the strip’s southern city of Rafah, where it has said it has intelligence that hostages are being held.

Hamas-led militants killed around 1,200 people, mainly civilians, and abducted around 250 others in the Oct. 7 attack. Around half of those have since been freed, most in swaps for Palestinian prisoners held by Israel during a weeklong cease-fire in November.

Israel says around 100 hostages are still captive in Gaza, along with the bodies of around 30 more. Israel's campaign in Gaza since the attack has killed more than 35,000 Palestinians, according to Gaza health officials.