Biden Doesn’t Know When Hamas Will Free American Hostages
President Joe Biden cannot say anything definite about the timing of the release of American hostages held by Hamas after the recent release of 24 hostages by the terrorist group as part of a temporary truce with Israel.
The initial terror attack on Israel resulted in a tragic toll, with over 1,200 people losing their lives, according to Israeli officials. In the aftermath, more than 14,000 people have been killed in retaliatory operations in Gaza, as reported by the Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry.
Among the hostages released on Friday were 13 Israelis, 10 Thai citizens, and one Filipino citizen. They have reportedly been transported to Israel to receive the necessary medical care, accompanied by Israeli Defense Forces Special Forces.
But Biden is unsure about the fate of approximately 10 Americans still held hostage by Hamas. When asked about their release, he remarked, “We don’t know when that will occur, but we’re going to expect it to occur.”
Biden unsure when American hostages will be freed by Hamas: 'We don't know' https://t.co/WgCzDehbps
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He further added, “We don’t know what the list of all the hostages are and when they will be released, but we know the numbers that are going to be released. So, it’s my hope and expectation it will be soon.”
Regarding the condition and status of the Americans being held by the Palestinian group, Biden admitted to not knowing whether they are still being held by Hamas or whether they’re even alive.
But he has a theory for the possible motive behind Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack, tying it to his diplomatic efforts in the Middle East to expand recognition of Israel as a nation. “I cannot prove what I’m about to say, but I believe one of the reasons why Hamas struck when they did was they knew that I was working very closely with the Saudis and others in the region to bring peace to the region by having recognition of Israel and Israel’s right to exist,” he stated.
While Hamas and Israel agreed to the ongoing pause, Israeli leaders have vowed to resume the war once the ceasefire lifts. Foreign Minister Eli Cohen of Israel stated, “Israel will continue its war on Hamas, and we will not stop until we achieve our two main goals, overthrowing the rule of Hamas and returning all the abductees back to us, safe and sound.”
When the ceasefire is complete, Biden hopes that the lives of civilians will be preserved, as he encouraged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to focus on reducing civilian casualties while aiming to “eliminate Hamas.”