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"We are going through hell, we have no day and night": their brothers are still in captivity - and they promise to keep fighting | Israel Hayom


Highlights: "We are going through hell, we have no day and night": their brothers are still in captivity - and they promise to keep fighting. Of the 138 abductees, 12 are brothers. In some cases, the abduction of two brothers left one brother fighting for them in Israel. "It's very hard for my parents that two of their children are kidnapped, but they're still optimistic," says Amos Horn, 42. "We are very optimistic, since they've been struggling since that day," says Eitan Horn, 37.

Alongside the moving pictures of the release of two brothers from Hamas captivity, six more couples are still in Gaza • Neta can't wait to hug his brothers Arbel and Dolev: "I want them at home even before they charge Hamas" • Eitan and Yair Horn's brother: "Remembers them and misses them" • Eli and Yossi Sharabi's brother is constantly working to free them: "They would have done much more for me if the situation were reversed"

Of the 138 abductees, 12 are brothers. In some cases, the abduction of two brothers left one brother fighting for them in Israel. Following the release of some of the women and children, five pairs of siblings who were abducted together or separately remained in Gaza. These are their names: twins Gali and Ziv Berman, brothers Ariel and David Kunio (whose daughters Yuli and Emma were released), brothers Yair and Eitan Horn, brothers Eli and Yossi Sharabi, and Dolev Yehud with his sister Arbel. This is in addition to Ariel Bibas, 4, and his brother Kfir, <> months, who were examined for their fate.

War Cabinet meeting with families of abductees and returnees // Photo: Moshe Ben-Simhon

"We're going through hell, I guess for my parents it's thousands of times more than for me – their two children in Gaza," says Neta Yehud, 32, brother of Dolev Yehud, 35, and Arbel Yehud, 28. "October 7 is not over for us, we don't have day and night." Dolev was abducted from his home while his wife Sigi, who gave birth to nine days after his abduction, remained in the safe room, along with their three small children Raz, Yotam and Ron. Arbel was kidnapped along with her boyfriend, Ariel Konyo, whose brother was also kidnapped.

"We have good friends who were murdered, kidnapped and missing, I'm not even available to mourn them because my two brothers are kidnapped," Neta adds. "We're trying to do everything we can to bring them back. That's what concerns us."

Dolev, Arbel and Neta Yehud, photo: courtesy of the family

The Yehud family is the third generation in Nir Oz. The three brothers are grandchildren of the kibbutz's founders. Netta, the middle brother, married with a daughter of one year and nine months, says that on Black Saturday, the terrorists entered his home three times and fired, but did not penetrate the safe room. His brother's fate was different. He tells about them: "Dolev, the eldest is hardworking, smart, helpful and family-oriented. Arbel lives on the kibbutz with her partner, they have known each other since the age of zero. They recently traveled together in South and Central America. She is always surrounded by friends and family. Six years ago, she returned to live on the kibbutz. She is very interested in space exploration and astronomy, loves man and nature. Time is not on our side, and certainly not in their favor. Our only goal is to bring our loved ones back into our laps."

"Their relationship is so good"

So far, the release of the abductees has provided quite a few moving images, including of siblings who returned together after being kidnapped together, such as Noam and Ella Or, whose mother was murdered and their father remained in captivity, as well as cases such as Maya and Itai Regev, who were kidnapped together from the party in Re'im, released a few days apart and moved an entire country when they were reunited in the hospital.

The Horn family is also waiting to meet brothers Yair (45) and Eitan (37) at Kibbutz Nir Oz. Abductees who were released gave the brothers' relatives a sign of life from them. "It's very hard for my parents that two of their children are kidnapped, but they're optimistic, since that day I've been struggling," says their brother Amos Horn, 42. "We are very close in the smallest things - in the food I eat, in the music I hear, or in the sympathy of Hapoel Be'er Sheva. I used to write to them, and now I remember them and miss them."

Eitan, Yair and Amos Horn,

The Horn family has three sons born in Argentina. Eitan immigrated to Israel at the age of 16 as part of the Na'ale program, followed by Amos and Yair when they were 18. Eventually, their parents, Ruti Shmiel and Itzik Horn, also immigrated. Dalia Kushner, Amos' wife, says: "They have such a good and close relationship that anyone who sees it from the side is simply jealous. All three immigrated for Zionist reasons. Yair settled in Nir Oz and we used to visit him there."

"Remember they have family"

That Saturday, Eitan Horn traveled from Kfar Saba to visit his older brother Yair. When the attack began, the family sent them messages, but at some point they cut off contact and a few days later received a message that they had been kidnapped. According to Amos, "My brothers are men, so there was no talk of their release, but you have to remember that they have a family waiting for their return."

Eitan is an educator who works in delegations, boarding schools and youth movements. His brother Yair is Nir Oz's party organizer. He produces activities on holidays and is responsible for the local pub. Both are active uncles to their two nephews. One of the favorite family pastimes is watching Hapoel Be'er Sheva soccer matches. "They are gorgeous uncles. Eitan is a funny man who does nonsense," says Dalia Kushner. "Yair is the uncle who builds toys out of wood. They are fans of Hapoel Be'er Sheva and since the children were little they go to games together. People who returned from captivity said they met them in Gaza and that they were doing relatively well, but with the renewed fighting there is fear, there is fear that they will be abandoned for the third time."

"Understand what they're going through"

On Black Saturday, Eli (51) and Yossi Sharabi, two of five siblings, were also kidnapped. Eli was kidnapped from his home in Bari, his wife Liane and their two daughters – Yahel, 53, and Noya, 13 – were murdered. Yossi was kidnapped together with his daughter's boyfriend, Ofir Engel, who has since been released. The terrorists who broke into the safe room took Yossi, his wife Nira and their daughters Yuval, Ofir and Oren out at gunpoint. Finally, they left them on one of the roads and kidnapped the men to Gaza.

"I'm doing everything to save them, they would have done a lot more for me if it were the other way around," says their brother Sharon Sharabi, 48. "Aside from being brothers, we're good friends who hang out together. I'm scared every second they're there. When Yossi returns, he will hug his daughters and his wife, but when Eli wants to run and hug Liane, Noya and Yahel, he will realize that he has no family. We buried three members of the family, and we don't even have time to mourn, because we are fighting for the lives of Eli and Yossi who are in Gaza, and we have an obligation to bring them back."

Sharon is currently in London, working for their release: "I met some of the abductees who were released. We understand what they are going through, the conditions they are in, and the damage caused to them. The rest of the prisoners must not be left there for even another minute. We appeal to the superpowers to work with the Qataris and Egyptians for the release of the prisoners. On October 7, the state violated the agreement with all its citizens. Just as it sent those who were kidnapped to the front, it has an obligation to bring them back - without this there is no unity and no revival. I feel that the whole nation is with me. If you were to interview Eli or Yossi, they would tell you that first the women and children must be returned, then the sick and the elderly, then the soldiers and young people, and only then them. It's part of their innate mutual responsibility."

Eli, Sharon and Yossi Sharabi, photo: Courtesy of the family

"We are not the same family we were, something in our family has cracked," says Rotem Sharabi, Eli and Yossi's niece. "At first we hid what was happening from my grandmother, their 75-year-old mother, so as not to hurt her, but we couldn't anymore. She is very worried. My uncles are amazing people, who love life. Yossi is an amazing father, a man of the world, a surfer. Eli is a sharp man, a manager at every level, always taking charge of things. I can't imagine what they're going through."

The Sharabi family is originally from Tel Aviv. In his youth, Eli moved to the kibbutz and fell in love with it. Later came Yossi, his younger brother. The two established their home and family in Bari. "Despite the distance, we are all very connected." Rotem was very attached to her cousin Noya, who was murdered. After her death, she recorded a song called "Noya Shemesh" in her memory, and she makes sure to appear at various events and rallies for the release of the abductees in order to raise awareness of her uncles who were kidnapped. "Every chance I get, I make my voice heard through music," she says.

Ariel and Kfir Bibas, photo: courtesy of the family

Ariel and David Konyo, photo: courtesy of the family

Gali and Ziv Berman,

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Source: israelhayom

All news articles on 2023-12-06

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