‘We’ve come to rescue you. Be calm’: Clip shows moment troops locate 3 hostages in Gaza home

Yamam officers seen storming apartment in Nuseirat, identifying Almog Meir Jan, Andrey Kozlov, and Shlomi Ziv, then extricating them under fire

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent

Hostages Almog Meir Jan and Andrey Kozlov are seen being rescued by forces of the Yamam unit, in central Gaza's Nuseirat, June 8, 2024. (Israel Police/IDF)

Police on Monday released dramatic footage showing the rescue of hostages Almog Meir Jan, Andrey Kozlov, and Shlomi Ziv by forces of the elite Yamam counter-terrorism unit and Shin Bet agents from central Gaza’s Nuseirat on Saturday.

The video showed Yamam officers storming into the home of Hamas terrorist Abdallah Aljamal, who was holding the three Israeli men hostage.

The officers reached a room in the house where Meir Jan, Kozlov, and Ziv were seen cowering amid heavy gunfire and explosions.

“Hebrew, Hebrew, where is everyone?” a Yamam officer is heard shouting to the three men. “Here, they are here,” another officer said.

“Name, name,” the first officer calls to Meir Jan and Kozlov, who respond with their names.

“Three [hostages] are in our hands,” the officer said after identifying the three.

“Everything is ok. We have come to rescue you, be calm,” the officer said, before fist-bumping Meir Jan.

The video then cuts to show Meir Jan, Kozlov, and Ziv being rushed out of the area by the Yamam officers and Shin Bet agents, while under fire.

Amid the fighting at the home of Aljamal, Yamam officer Chief Inspector Arnon Zmora was killed. The rescue mission was later named “Operation Arnon” in his honor.

Hostages Almog Meir Jan and Andrey Kozlov are seen being rescued by forces of the Yamam unit, in central Gaza’s Nuseirat, June 8, 2024. (Israel Police)

The Israel Defense Forces on Monday also released new footage showing the moments when the three hostages were extracted from the Gaza Strip in a helicopter.

The clip showed the three boarding the chopper and being flown to Tel Hashomer Hospital in central Israel.

The fourth hostage rescued in Saturday’s operation in Nuseirat, Noa Argamani, was taken in a separate helicopter after being freed by special forces from another building.

Read more: ‘Operation Arnon’: How 4 hostages were freed from Hamas captivity in central Gaza

Argamani, Meir Jan, Kozlov and Ziv had been abducted from the Supernova music festival near the community of Re’im on the morning of October 7, when some 3,000 Hamas-led terrorists killed 1,200 people and took 251 hostages in a murderous rampage in southern Israel.

Officers of the Yamam counter-terrorism unit, along with Shin Bet agents, simultaneously raided two multi-story buildings in the heart of Nuseirat on Saturday, where the four hostages were being held by Hamas-affiliated families and guards of the terror group, according to the military.

Hamas’s government media office claimed at least 274 people were killed amid the operation, an unverified figure that also does not differentiate between combatants and civilians.

The IDF acknowledged that it killed Palestinian civilians amid the fighting, but it placed the blame on Hamas for holding hostages and fighting in a dense civilian environment. “We know about under 100 [Palestinian] casualties. I don’t know how many of them are terrorists,” IDF Spokesman Daniel Hagari said on Saturday.

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