Female Israeli Hostage Recounts Rape and Torture By Hamas Captors in Gaza

2024-03-27 12:02:45

Amit Soussana, a 40-year-old Israeli women who endured 55 days of Hamas captivity, become the first freed hostage to publicly speak out about the sexual assault and torture she suffered in Gaza.

In one instance, a Hamas captor guarding her, named ‘Mohammad,’ forced her “to commit a sexual act on him” at gunpoint, Soussana told The New York Times.

Her account is “consistent with what she told two doctors and a social worker less than 24 hours after she was freed” in late November as part of hostages-for-terrorists deal, the newspaper noted.

She was kept in chains, and repeatedly tortured and interrogated by her captors. During one such interrogation, they “were hitting me and laughing and kicking me, and called the other hostages to see me,” Soussana recalls.

The revelations are particularly disturbing in light of some hundred Israeli hostages, including elderly, women and children, still languishing in Hamas’s captivity for more than 5 months. Hamas on Monday rejected an Israeli offer seeking the release of 40 hostages in exchange for nearly 800 Palestinian terrorist and murderers.

The NYT reports:

Amit Soussana, an Israeli lawyer, was abducted from her home on Oct. 7, beaten and dragged into Gaza by at least 10 men, some armed. Several days into her captivity, she said, her guard began asking about her sex life.

Ms. Soussana said she was held alone in a child’s bedroom, chained by her left ankle. Sometimes, the guard would enter, sit beside her on the bed, lift her shirt and touch her, she said.

He also repeatedly asked when her period was due. When her period ended, around Oct. 18, she tried to put him off by pretending that she was bleeding for nearly a week, she recalled.

Around Oct. 24, the guard, who called himself Muhammad, attacked her, she said.

Early that morning, she said, Muhammad unlocked her chain and left her in the bathroom. After she undressed and began washing herself in the bathtub, Muhammad returned and stood in the doorway, holding a pistol.

“He came towards me and shoved the gun at my forehead,” Ms. Soussana recalled during eight hours of interviews with The New York Times in mid-March. After hitting Ms. Soussana and forcing her to remove her towel, Muhammad groped her, sat her on the edge of the bathtub and hit her again, she said.

He dragged her at gunpoint back to the child’s bedroom, a room covered in images of the cartoon character SpongeBob SquarePants, she recalled.

“Then he, with the gun pointed at me, forced me to commit a sexual act on him,” Ms. Soussana said.

Ms. Soussana, 40, is the first Israeli to speak publicly about being sexually assaulted during captivity after the Hamas-led raid on southern Israel. In her interviews with The Times, conducted mostly in English, she provided extensive details of sexual and other violence she suffered during a 55-day ordeal.

Ms. Soussana’s personal account of her experience in captivity is consistent with what she told two doctors and a social worker less than 24 hours after she was freed on Nov. 30. Their reports about her account state the nature of the sexual act; The Times agreed not to disclose the specifics.

Ms. Soussana described being detained in roughly half a dozen sites, including private homes, an office and a subterranean tunnel. Later in her detention, she said, a group of captors suspended her across the gap between two couches and beat her.

Soussana showed astonishing courage as she was surrounded by a dozen or so Hamas terrorists on October 7.  She resisted ferociously as Hamas abductors tried to drag her towards the Gaza border.  The terrorists could be seen hitting and punching her as tried to restrain her on the ground, a video clip showed. The armed men finally bring a car to drive her across the border after failing to drag her on foot.

The Times of Israel on December 5, described the footage:

The video, which was taken from security cameras around Kibbutz Kfar Aza, was first aired Monday evening by Channel 12 news.

In the footage, she can be seen fighting off the group of terrorists, some of whom were visibly armed, as they attempted to pull her in the direction of Gaza. After failing to restrain her, one of the terrorists picked her up and carried her over his shoulder for several steps.

Soussana then successfully wrestled herself free, causing him to fall to the ground, but was quickly surrounded by other terrorists who appeared to beat her before continuing to drag her by force.

According to Channel 12, after repeated failed attempts to restrain her, the terrorists ultimately forced Soussana into a car and drove the rest of the way to Gaza instead of continuing by foot.

IDF confirms Hamas No. 3 Marwan Issa eliminated in airstrike

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) on Tuesday confirmed the killing of Marwan Issa, Hamas’s no. 3 leaders based in Gaza. Issa, who was among the top planners of the October 7 massacre, was targeted in an airstrike earlier this month, but the IDF could not immediately verify his elimination.

The Israeli news website YNET reported:

Marwan Issa, No. 3 at the top of the Hamas leadership in the Gaza Strip and the deputy to Hamas’ supreme military commander Mohammad Deif, was killed in an airstrike in the Nuseirat refugee camp earlier this month, IDF spokesman Brigadier General Daniel Hagari confirmed Tuesday evening. This confirmation puts an end to speculation about whether Issa is dead, after the United States confirmed such reports last week.

This is the most significant killing in the Gaza Strip since the outbreak of the war. In January , Saleh al-Arouri deputy chairman of Hamas’s political bureau and a founder of the terror group’s military wing was killed in a blast in the Hamas offices in Beirut’s Dahieh quarter.

“We checked all the intelligence and we are certain,” Hagari said from the defense headquarters in Tel Aviv. He noted that, along with Issa, Ghazi Abu Tama’a, a senior Hamas official who was at the scene of the assassination and served as the head of the combat and administrative assistance staff in the terrorist organization, was also eliminated.

IDF holds aerial drill in the north amid growing Hezbollah aggression

The Israeli air force is conducting a drill to test “increased readiness for war in the Northern Arena” amid growing Hezbollah aggression, the IDF said in a press statement on Wednesday.

The aerial exercise is taking place in the backdrop of increased cross-border attacks and incursions by Lebanon-based pro-Iranian terrorist group Hezbollah. The terror militia has been firing rockets and mortars, as well as sending kamikaze drones into Israel. “The IDF detected on Wednesday afternoon a Hezbollah aircraft in the area of Rosh Hanikra,” the Jerusalem Post reported.

The IDF disclosed the details of the drill:

The training program will focus on increasing the IAF’s readiness for war in the northern arena and in other arenas during prolonged combat. This is through the planning and implementation of operational models, scenarios relevant to the characteristics of the various regions and threats. The framework of the training will include massive, long-range strikes, flying deep into enemy territory, and surprise exercises will be held for the various units. The training plan includes all the formations of the IAF and the Operational Headquarters of the IAF which will manage, in parallel with the war, processes to raise readiness, ongoing training and the development of military tactics.

The training program was coordinated so that it would not impede the operational activity in the war in the Gaza Strip and the integrated operations with the ground forces.


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