Erdogan Speaks on Letter Received From Relatives of Israeli Hostages Held in Gaza
15:16 18.11.2023 (Updated: 08:52 19.11.2023)
© AP Photo / Ohad ZwigenbergFamilies and friends of about 240 hostages held by Hamas in Gaza call for their return as they participate in a five-day "March for the Hostages" from Tel Aviv to the Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem, near the village of Beit Hashmonai, Israel, Thursday, Nov. 16, 2023.
© AP Photo / Ohad Zwigenberg
ANKARA (Sputnik) - On October 7, Palestinian group Hamas launched a surprise large-scale rocket attack against Israel from Gaza and breached the border, killing and abducting people in neighboring Israeli communities. Israel launched retaliatory strikes and ordered a complete blockade of the region, cutting off supplies of water, food, and fuel.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday that he had received a letter from relatives of Israelis held hostage by Hamas asking him to intervene in the situation, and that Ankara was working to secure their release.
"I have received a letter from the families of Israelis held by Hamas asking me to intervene and secure the release of their relatives. We do not want Israelis or Palestinians to be held captive. As I explained, Hamas has no prospect of not releasing these people. They are already saying, 'We will release them.' They want the release of prisoners illegally arrested by Israel, including small children, mothers and fathers," Erdogan told reporters upon his return from Berlin.
Israeli authorities are so "dehumanized" that they arrest five-year-old children, the Turkish leader said.
"We have brought our intelligence organization into the case and they are now investigating. We are working to get a result. It will be great if we do," Erdogan said.
On October 27, Israel launched a large-scale ground incursion inside the Gaza Strip with the declared goal of eliminating Hamas fighters and rescuing the hostages.