Hamas hostages: Stories of the people taken from Israel

Maxim Kharkin
Maxim Kharkin's mother described speaking to him on the morning of 7 October [Family handout]

A total of 116 hostages remain unaccounted for after being kidnapped by Hamas on 7 October last year.

Four hostages were rescued by the Israeli Defense Forces from central Gaza on 8 June. Noa Argamani, Almog Meir Jan, Andrei Kozlov and Shlomi Ziv had all been kidnapped from the Nova music festival,

According to Israel, 251 Israelis and foreigners were taken during the 7 October attacks.

Israel gives an official figure of 120 hostages being held in Gaza because it includes four people taken hostage in 2014 and 2015. Two of these are believed to have died.

These are the stories of those hostages who are still being held, which have either been confirmed by the BBC or credibly reported.

This list is regularly updated and names may change, as some people feared kidnapped are confirmed to have been killed or released.

Last updated on 8 June 2024 at 22:51 BST

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Yagev Kirsht, 34, was taken from his home in Kibbutz Nirim, alongside his wife, Rimon Buchstab Kirsht. She has now been released.

Alexander Trupanov, was taken hostage with his mother Lena Trupanov, 50, his partner Sapir Cohen, 29, and his grandmother Irina Tati, 73. All were abducted from Kibbutz Nir Oz as they spent the Sabbath together, according to a statement by Canada's Raoul Wallenburg Center for Human Rights. Irina and Lena were released on Wednesday 29 November and Sapir was freed the next day.

Ariel Cunio, his girlfriend Arbel Yahud are also thought to have been abducted in the same attack on Nir Oz. Eitan Cunio, Ariel's brother who escaped Hamas, told the Jewish Chronicle that his last message from Ariel said: "We are in a horror movie."

David Cunio, 33, another of Ariel's brothers, was also kidnapped from Nir Oz, family say. David's wife Sharon Aloni Cunio and their three-year-old twin daughters Ema and Yuly were released on 27 November. Sharon's sister Daniele Aloni, and her six-year-old daughter Emilia were both released on 24 November.

Doron Steinbrecher, 30, a veterinary nurse, was in her apartment in Kibbutz Kfar Aza when Hamas attacked, the Times of Israel reported. At 10:30 on 7 October, the newspaper said, she sent a voice message to friends: "They've arrived, they have me."

Naama Levy, 19, was filmed being bundled into a jeep, her hands tied behind her back. The footage was released by Hamas and circulated widely on social media. According to her mother, the teenager had just begun her military service.

Yousef Zyadna, a 53-year-old Bedouin dairy farmer, was abducted from Kibbutz Holit and taken to Gaza along with his sons Hamza, 22, and Bilal, 18, and his daughter, Aisha, 16. Aisha and Bilal were released on Thursday 30 November.

Elad Katzir, 47, was abducted from Nir Oz with his mother, Hanna. The IDF said it had recovered his body from Gaza on 6 April after he was "murdered in captivity" by Islamic Jihad. Hanna was released in November.

Ohad Ben Ami, 55, was kidnapped from Be'eri with his wife, Raz. She was released by Hamas on 29 November.

Twin brothers Gali and Ziv Berman, 26, were taken from Kfar Aza. Ziv was messaging a friend as the attack happened. Their family said the IDF has told them the brothers are being held in Gaza. Their brother Liran told CBN news the pair had "twin power" and were the centre of attention wherever they went.

Iraq-born Shlomo Mansour, 85, was taken captive from Kibbutz Kissufim, where he lived and worked as a chicken coop manager. His wife, Mazal, managed to escape.

Daniela Gilboa, 19, sent messages saying that Kibbutz Nahal Oz, where she was staying, was under attack and asked her mother to pray for her. Her boyfriend, Roy Dadon, told the Economist 1843 magazine that he believes he saw a glimpse of her in a video showing three girls being driven away in the back of an SUV.

Itay Chen, 19, a dual US-Israeli citizen and IDF solider, was on active duty with a tank unit on 7 October, according to the Times of Israel. The paper reported that his family was notified by the IDF that he is officially considered missing in action and probably being held hostage. Another soldier in his unit, Matan Angrest, 21, is also presumed to be in Gaza.

Yosi Sharabi, 51, was taken from Be'eri with his brother, Eli Sharabi, 55. Eli's wife and two daughters were murdered in the attack. Ofir Engel, the boyfriend of Yosi's daughter, Yuval, was also taken, but released on 29 November.

Agam Berger, 19, was kidnapped from Nahal Oz. She was seen being taken away in videos released by Hamas.

Edan Alexander, 19, is an Israeli-US citizen who volunteered to join the Israeli army. He was serving near the Gaza border at the time of Hamas's attack. Edan's family said they had been told by Israeli officials that he had been taken to Gaza as a hostage.

Kaid Farhan Elkadi, 53, lives with his family south of Rahat and worked as a security guard, according to Israeli media. Reports said his family believes he was kidnapped and taken to Gaza, based on images shared by Hamas.

Matan Zanguaker, 24, was taken with his partner Ilana Gritzewsky, 30, from Nir Oz, according to Ilana's father. Ilana, a Mexican national, was released on Thursday 30 November.

Eitan Horn, 37, and his brother Yair, 45, both Argentinian citizens, were also in Nir Oz at the time of the attack. Their father Itzik said he believes they were kidnapped. Yair is a construction worker while Eitan works in education.

Itai Svirsky, 38, is thought to have been abducted when his elderly parents were killed in Be'eri. He had been visiting them for the holiday of Simhat Torah.

Keith Seigel, 64, and his wife Adrienne - often known as Aviva - Seigel, 62, were taken from their home in Kfar Aza, Keith's brother Lee Seigel told the BBC. Adrienne was released on 26 November.

Omri Miran, 46, lived in Nahal Oz with his wife and two daughters. Omri was led away by Hamas with his hands tied, his wife Lishay told the Guardian newspaper. She told him not to be a hero, urging: "Do whatever they want because I want you back."

Bipin Joshi, 23, a Nepalese student, is believed to have been taken from Kibbutz Alumim. Nepalese newspaper Setopati says he was one of 49 university students studying agriculture in Israel. It says 10 students were killed in the attack.

Ilan Weiss, 58, went missing from Kibbutz Be'eri after he was last seen leaving the house to defend the community. On 25 November, his wife Shiri Weiss, 53, and their daughter, Noga, 18, were freed from captivity in a hostage deal.

Oded Lifshitz, 83, and his wife Yocheved, 85 were taken hostage from Nir Oz. On Monday 23 October, Yocheved was one of two elderly women to be freed. After hearing the news of her mother's release, their daughter Sharone - a London-based artist - said: "While I cannot put into words the relief that she is now safe, I will remain focused on securing the release of my father and all those - some 200 innocent people - who remain hostages in Gaza."

Avraham Munder, 78, was kidnapped from Nir Oz, Israeli officials say. His wife Ruthi, daughter and grandson have since been released.

Omer Neutra, a 22-year-old Israeli-American and grandson of Holocaust survivors, put off plans to go to college in the US to study in Israel, and eventually joined the IDF. He was serving as a tank commander near Gaza when Hamas attacked. Omer's parents say they were told by the Israeli embassy that he had been kidnapped.

Alex Danzig, 75, a scholar and historian of the Holocaust, was at his home in Nir Oz, when it was attacked by Hamas. "We know for sure he was kidnapped," his son Mati told the BBC. Alex - whose older sister Edith is a Holocaust survivor - has spent the last 30 years working for Yad Vashem, Israel's Holocaust remembrance centre. His disappearance has triggered a campaign for his release, both in Israel and in Poland, the country of his birth.

Alex Danzig lecturing
Alex Danzig has spent decades educating people about the Holocaust [Mati Danzig]

Itzhk Elgarat, 68, was kidnapped at the same time as Alex Danzig, his brother Danny Elgert told Israel's Kan 11 TV station, adding that he had tracked his brother's phone to the border with Gaza.

Gadi Moses, 79, was also abducted during the same attack on Nir Oz, according to relatives and the Israeli aid agency where he worked as an agricultural expert. Efrat Katz, his partner, was initially thought to have been captured as well, but she was later found dead, the Times of Israel reported. Efrat was the mother of Doron Asher, who was taken hostage and later released with her two daughters. Ravid Katz, 51, Doron Asher's brother, was originally thought to have been taken hostage from Nir Oz, but on 28 November his family confirmed that he had been killed on 7 October.

Nimrod Cohen, 19, had studied software engineering in high school, according to reports. After he was kidnapped, his father was invited to meet Pope Francis in Rome along with other hostages' families.

Tsachi Idan, 51, was last seen by his wife, Gali, as he was taken away by Hamas gunmen. Their family had been ambushed in their safe room in Nahal Oz. Their ordeal was live-streamed by Hamas. Their eldest child, Maayan - who had just turned 18 - was shot dead, Gali told the BBC.

Yarden Bibas, 34, was abducted from Nir Oz. His wife, Shiri, and their two young children, Ariel and Kfir, were also taken hostage, but on 29 November, Hamas claimed they had been killed in an Israeli air strike while in captivity. The Israeli government has said it is checking the claim.

Ronen Engel, 54, was taken from Kibbutz Nir Oz along with his wife, Karina Engelbert, 51, and their two daughters, Mika, 18 and Yuval, 11. On 1 December, the organisation representing the families said he had been murdered. Karina, Mika and Yuval were released on 27 November.

Karina Ariev, a 19-year-old soldier, was serving at an army base near Gaza when she was kidnapped. Her sister Alexandra told the BBC she heard shooting as Karina called her during the attack, and later saw a video showing Karina being taken away in a vehicle.

A family photo of Karina Ariev, kidnapped from an Israeli military base near Gaza
Karina Ariev was at the Nahal Oz military base, which was among the first to be attacked [Family Handout]

Ofer Kalderon, 53, was taken by Hamas from Nir Oz. On 27 November his two children, Erez, 12, and Sahar, 16, were released. Two other relatives, 80-year-old Carmela Dan and her granddaughter, Noya, 12, were also believed to have been taken, but Israeli authorities later announced they had been found dead.

Omri Miran, 46, was abducted after his family opened the door to their secure shelter to an Israeli child, who said he would be killed otherwise. Omri's wife, Lishay Lavi, said she saw him being taken away in handcuffs with three other hostages from Nahal Oz.

Liri Elbag, 18, had just started military training as an Army lookout near the Gaza border when Hamas attacked, her father Eli told the Associated Press. Eli said he saw her in a video circulated later by Hamas, crowded with others on the back of a military truck which had been seized by the gunmen.

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A number of people are believed to have been abducted from the Supernova music festival in southern Israel. Among them:

Alexander Lobanov, 32, is a Russian-Israeli citizen who was kidnapped at the festival.

Ori Danino, 25, is reported to have got away from the festival in his car, but it's believed he was captured after turning back in an attempt to save some people he had met there.

Almog Sarusi, 26, was kidnapped from the music festival and his partner Shahar Gindi was killed, according to Israeli media. Almog's father, Yigal, was among the relatives of hostages who met with Israel's prime minister in October.

Omer Shem Tov, 21, called his parents as he was running away from gunfire and managed to get into a friend's car. His parents, Shelly and Malki Shem Tov, told Israeli media they lost contact with their son and the live location on his phone showed he was beyond the border in Gaza.

Idan Shtivi, 28, an environmental sciences student, was attending the festival to take pictures at music and yoga workshops being held by friends. He escaped the site in his car but was attacked by Hamas along the route. The bodies of two of his passengers were found, and his family told the Jerusalem Post they suspect he was kidnapped.

Yosef Ohana, 24, had been at the festival with a friend, who told his mother he and Yosef had remained to help people escape the gunfire before running themselves. Yosef was last seen hiding under a car, and Israeli authorities have visited his mother to say he was kidnapped.

Avinatan Or, 30, appeared in a video being marched away from his girlfriend Noa Argamani by Hamas, the Times of Israel reported. The IDF said on 8 June that Noa Argamani was rescued from central Gaza, along with three others.

Eden Yerushalmi
Eden Yerushalmi's family say they were told she had been taken hostage [Family handout]

Eden Yerushalmi, 24, called her family during Hamas's attack on the festival, her sister May told CBS News. The family say they were subsequently informed by the IDF that Eden had been abducted.

Jonathan Samerano, 21, has been missing since 7am on the morning of the festival. His family have been told to presume he is being held in Gaza, Israeli media reported.

Guy Gilboa-Dalal
Guy Gilboa-Dalal was filmed in captivity in Gaza, his family say [Family handout]

Guy Gilboa-Dalal, 22, attended the festival with his brother. Guy appears in a hostage video that his family say confirms he is in Gaza.

Eitan Mor, 23, lives in Jerusalem, and was working as a security guard at the festival, the Times of Israel said. He reportedly texted his uncle after Hamas arrived and was last seen with a friend bringing others to safety.

Alon Ohel, 22, a Serbian citizen, took refuge in a shelter after the festival came under attack, his family say. They have seen footage of him being dragged away after a grenade attack.

Inbar Heiman, a student aged 21, was seen by two young Israeli men being taken away from the festival on a motorcycle. Hamas have released a video in which she is seen very briefly.

Maxim Kharkin is aged 35 and a Russian speaker, his mother told Russian media. She added that he had called her at 07:00 on the morning of the attack.

Hersh Goldberg-Polin, 23, a dual US-Israeli citizen, was badly injured in the attack, his family told the BBC. Eyewitness accounts say he was seen being forced onto a white pick-up truck - the last-known signal from his phone came from just inside Gaza.

Segev Kalfon, 26, was running away from the festival, across the highway, when he was captured by Hamas, according to the Hostages and Missing Families Forum.

Romi Lesham Gonen, 23, was on the phone to her mother as she tried to escape from the Supernova festival. Merav Leshem Gonan has recounted a conversation in which her daughter begged for help after being shot. ABC News reports that Romi's phone is now in Gaza.

Bar Kuperstein, 21, last spoke to his family early on the morning of 7 October, as the attack unfolded. Later the same day, his family say they identified him in a video of Israeli prisoners, posted by Hamas. Since then, they say they have had no further information.

Eliya Cohen, 26, was hiding with his girlfriend Ziv from the attack, when Ziv felt him being pulled up and driven away by the gunmen, Eliya's mother has told the video initiative #BringThemHomeNow. The family then found a photo of Eliya in Gaza, the Times of Israel reported.

Elkana Bohbot
Elkana Bohbot was seen in a video posted by Hamas [Family handout]

Elkana Bohbot, 34, had gone to the party with friends and, before losing contact, he spoke to his wife and mother telling them he was helping to evacuate the wounded, the Times of Israel reported. Hours later, his family found a video of him posted online by Hamas, which has been seen by BBC Verify.

Rom Braslavski, 19, was working on security for the festival. According to an account published by Hostages and Missing Families Forum, he was trying to rescue an injured person in the attack when he was caught in a volley of fire. He has not been heard from since.

Omer Wenkert, 22, a restaurant manager, sent a message to his family to say he was going to a safe shelter but then lost contact, his father Shai Wenkert told the BBC's Today Programme. Shai Wenkert said he had seen footage of his son in captivity, including a photo of him handcuffed and wearing only underwear.

Evyatar David, 23, was at the festival and on the morning of the attacks, described fleeing from gunfire before losing contact with the outside world, his brother says. Later, his family say, Evyatar's sister posted on Instagram appealing for information about his whereabouts. She then received a text from an unknown number, which contained video footage of Evyatar handcuffed on the floor of a dark room. According to Israel's foreign ministry he is being held captive by Hamas in Gaza.

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Carmel Gat, 39, is Jordan's sister-in-law, and also was seen by her father being taken by gunmen from Kibbutz Be'eri, Haaretz newspaper reported. She has not been heard from since.

Ohad Yahalomi, 49, was abducted from Nir Oz, along with his 12-year-old son, Eitan, who was released during the November ceasefire.

Dror Or, 48, was seen by a neighbour being dragged out of his home in Be'eri, according to their nephew Emmanuel Besorai, along with his son and daughter. On Saturday 25 November Dror's son Noam, 17, and daughter Alma, 13, were released from captivity. The body of Yonat, 50 - Dror's wife and the children's mother - was identified among the 120 people murdered at the kibbutz, Yonat's brother told the Guardian newspaper.

Tal Shoham, 38, was taken from Kibbutz Be'eri. His wife Adi, also 38, her mother Dr Shoshan Haran, 67, were released by Hamas on 25 November, along with the couple's children Nave, eight, and Yahel, three. Dr Haran's husband, Avshalom - an economist and dual German/Israeli citizen - was killed on 7 October.

Sagui Dekel-Chen, 35, an American-Israeli citizen, has been missing since Hamas's attack on Nir Oz, his father Jonathan told the BBC. He said his son was not found among the dead and the "only reasonable explanation" is that he was taken to Gaza.

Sagui Dekel-Chen
Sagui Dekel-Chen's father has not heard from him since Hamas attacked the kibbutz where he lived [Jonathan Dekel-Chen]

Thailand's government says that six of its citizens are still being held hostage in Gaza.

Those still being held are believed to include Watchara Sriuan, 32. His mother, Viewwaew, told the Thaiger news site that the family had been informed he was being held captive.

Hostages who have died

A number of other people thought to have been held hostage are now confirmed to have died, either during the 7 October attack or while in captivity.

On 3 June, the IDF announced it had told the families of four men taken hostage - Haim Peri, Yoram Metzger, Amiram Cooper and Nadav Popplewell - that they were no longer alive and their bodies were being held by Hamas.

On 24 May, the Israeli army said that the bodies of three hostages had been recovered - Orion Hernandez, 30, Chanan Yablonka, 42, and Michel Nisenbaum, 59.

Over the month of May, a number of other hostages' bodies have also been found.

Their names are Shani Louk, 23, Amit Buskila, 27, Itzhak Gelerenter, 58, Ron Benjamin, 53, Lior Ruadaeff, 61, and Eylakim Libman, 23.

The families of two Thai hostages, Sonthaya Oakkharasr and Sudthisak Rinthalak, were informed on 16 May that they were killed during the 7 October attack and their bodies were being held by Hamas in Gaza.

On 16 December, the Israeli military expressed "deep remorse" after soldiers mistakenly killed three hostages in northern Gaza who had escaped from their captors. They were named as Yotam Haim, 28, Samer Talalka, 22, and Alon Shamriz, 26.

The death of Tamir Adar, 38, was announced on 5 January by the Hostages and Missing Persons Families Forum. Other hostages confirmed to have died include Gadi Haggai, Ron Scherman, Nik Beizer, Tal Chaimi, an Israeli-Romanian citizen aged 41, Joshua Mollel, a 19-year-old Tanzanian student, 27-year-old Eden Zecharya, and 36-year-old Ziv Dado.

Other fatalities include Sahar Baruch, 25, Dror Kaplun, 68, Aviv Atzili, 49, Arye Zalmanovich, 85, Ronen Engel, 54, Maya Goren, 56, Guy Iluz, 26, Ofir Tzarfati, 27, Ofra Keider, 70, and Eliyahu Margalit, 75.

The bodies of 19-year-old soldier Noa Marciano and 65-year-old Yehudit Weiss were found by Israeli troops in buildings close to Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City.

In March, the family of Uriel Baruch, 35, said they had been informed by the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) that he was killed on 7 October in the attack on the Nova music festival, and that his body was being held in Gaza. He was married with two children.

Hostages whose death has been reported, but not confirmed, include Shiri Bibas, 32, and her two young children, Ariel and Kfir.

Research by Jamie Ryan and Emma Pengelly

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