US assisted Israel in Gaza hostage rescue, US official

An American unit in Israel supported the efforts to rescue four Israeli hostages in the central Gaza strip, CNN reported Saturday citing a US official. 

“An American cell in Israel supported the efforts to rescue four Israeli hostages, working with Israeli forces on the operation,” the official told CNN.

CNN previously reported that Israel prepared for weeks for Saturday’s operation, with hundreds of personnel from the Israeli military, the domestic intelligence service and a special police unit involved.

Earlier Saturday, Israel said that it retrieved four Israeli hostages from the central Gaza Strip after a military operation in the area.

The army identified the freed hostages as Noa Argamani, 25; Andrey Kozlov, 27; Shlomi Ziv, 40; and Almog Meir, 21.

It also said the hostages were found in two separate areas of the camp, noting that they were in good health.

Israel has continued its brutal offensive on Gaza since a Hamas attack last Oct. 7 despite a UN Security Council resolution demanding an immediate cease-fire.

More than 36,700 Palestinians have since been killed in Gaza, most of them women and children, and over 83,500 others injured, according to local health authorities.

Eight months into the Israeli war, vast tracts of Gaza lay in ruins amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water, and medicine.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice, whose latest ruling ordered Tel Aviv to immediately halt its operation in the southern city of Rafah, where over a million displaced Palestinians had sought refuge.​​​​​​​

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