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Montevideo, May 29th 2024 - 20:27 UTC



Uruguay doing its best to help Hamas-held hostage

Thursday, October 26th 2023 - 10:21 UTC
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Shani Goren Horovitz met the requirements to be granted Uruguayan citizenship and now Lacalle's administration is brokering her release Shani Goren Horovitz met the requirements to be granted Uruguayan citizenship and now Lacalle's administration is brokering her release

Uruguayan President Luis Lacalle Pou explained Wednesday that the South American country's Foreign Ministry was engaged in the ongoing talks for the release of the hostages in the hands of the pro-Palestine terrorist group Hamas.

“We have been dealing with this issue for a day and a half, the issue of nationality was the first thing we tried to resolve, and then, as far as I can tell you because it is a sensitive situation, I think that if we talk too much it can be frustrated or complicated in some way, there is Israel that was a victim of this attack and of terrorism and then there are some countries that are acting as negotiators,” Lacalle told reporters in Río Negro where he attended an event not far from Fray Bentos.

“What we did was to talk to the Israeli embassy to say that we had been contacted about the hostage issue and that we did not want to obstruct any kind of work, strategy, or tactics...,” he added.

On Tuesday, the Uruguayan Embassy in Israel expressed its “utmost concern” over the situation of Shani Goren Horovitz, the granddaughter of Uruguayan nationals, who was granted Uruguayan citizenship this week, after being abducted from the kibbutz where she lived on Oct. 7.

Lacalle also explained that the Uruguayan government asked the Red Cross to speed up the 29-year-old girl's release.

“The only thing that makes me not feel worse is to think that she did not go alone, that there are other people from the kibbutz with her, that she is not alone. She was already afraid of the terrorists before,” said Shani's mother Tamar. “You have to go on living, but my heart is not here; it is with my daughter,” the woman was also quoted as saying. “I know that from here I can't do anything to make my daughter feel better. Everything I thought was left in the life of before. From today, for me, they are not people. There is no one to talk to. There is nothing good to think about them. So much hate, so much...,” she said. “They are not people, they are not animals, they are worse than animals with all the hate and what they brought out on that Saturday,” she elaborated.

“The terrorists had obviously entered the kibbutz,” Shani's sister Shira told the Hebrew Hai Weekly after the events that triggered the ongoing crisis.

“We didn't understand where the army was. Shani was very scared, I was shaking too, we didn't know what to do,” she added.

”They tried to break many things to scare me and (to) get me out, but I didn't come out [of my house]. Then they entered the neighbors', I heard gunshots, some of them were taken out, they kidnapped them,“ she went on.

In the other house, her sister was talking on the phone with her sister-in-law when the conversation was suddenly interrupted by shouts in Arabic, the sound of gunshots and her crying. It was the last the family heard from Shani until she appeared in one of the videos released by Hamas.

”At least we know that she was not shot. For one thing, we saw her later in a video released by Hamas. But in addition, a woman from the kibbutz, who was saved because when she was shot she pretended to be dead, said she saw Shani alive. She saw that Shani was helping my neighbor's daughter, who was with her two daughters. The grandmother of those girls was found dead in the fields,“ Shina told Uruguayan journalist Ana Jerozolimski, who lives in Israel.

”To the best of our knowledge, Ms. Goren is currently being held hostage in Gaza. This Diplomatic Mission wishes to express its utmost concern for her situation and request -through the efforts of your Ministry- her immediate release,” a note from the Uruguayan Embassy to the Foreign Ministry in Montevideo read.


Categories: Politics, International, Uruguay.

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