The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) has confirmed the safe return of Yelena Trupanov and her mother Irena Tati, the Russian-Israeli hostages released from Hamas captivity in Gaza. Special forces and members of the Shin Bet security agency are escorting them in Israeli territory, where they will undergo an initial medical assessment before reuniting with their families.
The IDF further stated that the Red Cross has transported the two hostages to Egypt via the Rafah crossing. Israeli forces will verify their identities at a designated meeting point, and they will then be brought into Israel through a side gate at the Kerem Shalom crossing. Families of the hostages are being kept informed by IDF representatives.
The released hostages, Yelena Trupanov (50) and Irena Tati (73), both holding dual Israeli and Russian citizenship, were abducted from Kibbutz Nir Oz during the Hamas-led onslaught on October 7. The kidnapping was described by Hamas as a “gesture” to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Despite these releases, concern persists for the remaining hostages. Omer Waiss, who lost his parents in the Hamas attack on October 7, emphasizes the urgency of bringing the hostages home quickly due to reported mistreatment. He criticizes Hamas as “despicable monsters” and emphasizes the harsh conditions faced by the hostages, urging swift action for their well-being.
Waiss recounts the tragic loss of his father, Shmuel Waiss, on October 7, and the subsequent captivity of his mother, Yehudit. The family believes Yehudit was initially taken alive, but her body was later discovered during the IDF ground invasion near Shifa Hospital in Gaza City. Waiss expresses the difficulty in coming to terms with being an orphan and the emotional toll of the ongoing ordeal.