Two hundred days: Cameron calls on Hamas to end hostages’ suffering

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Two hundred days: Cameron calls on Hamas to end hostages’ suffering

Foreign secretary reflects on 'unimaginable suffering' of captives and their families as another bleak landmark passes

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Lord Cameron on latest visit to Israel
Lord Cameron on latest visit to Israel

Lord Cameron has issued a renewed plea exactly 200 days after the 7 October atrocity for Hamas to release the remaining hostages it is holding in Gaza.

In a statement to Jewish News, the foreign secretary writes of the “unimaginable suffering” faced by families and friends of the hostages, who are still held in Gaza.

He noted that this was “suffering” Hamas itself “could choose to end” if the leaders of the terror organisation agreed to repeated proposals for a ceasefire in the region.

As Jewish communities across the world spent a Pesach clouded by events in the Middle East, the former prime minister noted: “Today marks 200 days of captivity for the hostages still held in Gaza at the hands of Hamas, which has brought unimaginable suffering.

“I have met many of their families and heard of their horrendous ordeals. They have shown incredible courage in the most difficult of circumstances.

“This is a suffering that Hamas could choose to end by agreeing to a deal that would see the safe release of all hostages.

“Today our call is as strong as on the day they were taken, Hamas must send the hostages home.”

Lord Cameron reiterated his point on social media posting on X/Twitter on Tuesday stating:”200 days ago, Hamas carried out the deadliest attack on the Jewish people since the Holocaust.

“200 days on, hostages remain in captivity, and their loved ones continue to face unimaginable suffering.”

Aviva Siegel, who was abducted from Kfar Azza with her husband Keith on October 7, was among the 110 hostages released from Gaza in November during the first ceasefire between Israel and Hamas. Courtesy: X

Cameron’s plea came as families of the hostages held by Hamas in the Gaza Strip hold a protest in Tel Aviv to mark 200 days of their loved ones being held captive.

The families and their supporters painted their hands red and held them up to the sky in an act of protest at the city’s HaBima Square.Hamas attacked Israel on October 7, killing about 1,200 people and taking 250 hostage according to Israeli tallies.

Israel says the terrorists are still holding about 100 captives and the remains of more than 30 others.

Other Western diplomats also joined with the UK foreign secretary in urging the terror organisation to give up the hostages captured in the bloody massacre.

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said: “As long as the hostages are not free, we will not let up. Only when they are home will peace have a chance.”

Israel’s response to the Hamas atrocity has been a military campaign it says is aimed at eliminating Hamas and ensuring the UK proscribed terror group cannot carry out a future attack.

But according to figures put out by the terrorist-controlled Gaza health ministry, Israel has killed at least 34,183 Palestinians and injured more than 77,000 others.

Claims that women and children account for two-thirds of those killed are disputed.

The United States said Monday that Hamas has refused a “very significant proposal that was on the table” for a halt in fighting, the release of hostages held in Gaza, the release of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel and an increase in humanitarian aid to civilians in Gaza.

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