Hamas announced the release of two American hostages, who were among around 200 individuals abducted in attacks by the militant group in Israel on October 7. The hostages, identified as a mother and her daughter, were released by the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades in response to Qatari efforts, as stated by Hamas in a Telegram message. Specific details regarding the timing and manner of their release were not provided by Hamas.
The Israeli military confirmed that most of the hostages abducted to Gaza are still alive. It was also mentioned that there were deceased individuals whose bodies were taken to the Gaza Strip as a result of the attacks. Additionally, the military reported that over 20 of the hostages were minors, while between 10 and 20 were over the age of 60. Furthermore, there are between 100 and 200 people considered missing since the Hamas attacks.
The October 7 assault by the Palestinian militant group resulted in a significant loss of life in Israel, with over 1,400 people, predominantly civilians, reported killed according to Israeli officials. In response, Israel carried out a sustained bombardment in the Gaza Strip, resulting in the reported deaths of at least 4,137 individuals, primarily civilians, according to the Hamas-run health ministry. It should be noted that Hebrew media cited Israeli officials clarifying that the decision to release the two hostages by Hamas was unilateral and that Jerusalem did not offer anything in exchange.