Hostage families to hold Q&A, rally to mark Passover and 200 days of captivity

Tel Aviv Hostages Square event comes day after protest movement calling for release of hostages held a ‘non-seder’ outside Netanyahu’s home in Caesarea

Israelis take part in a demonstration calling for the release of hostages, at Habima Square in Tel Aviv, April 23, 2024. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)
Israelis take part in a demonstration calling for the release of hostages, at Habima Square in Tel Aviv, April 23, 2024. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

The Hostages Families Forum will be holding a question-and-answer session in Tel Aviv on Tuesday to mark Passover and 200 days having passed since the October 7 attacks and the abductions of their loved ones.

The panel, to be held at 8:30 p.m. at the central Tel Aviv plaza on Shaul HaMelech Boulevard that has been dubbed “Hostages Square” since the start of the war, will include speakers with unique experiences pertinent to the current situation.

On the stage will be Yamit Ashkenazi, an evacuee from Kibbutz Kfar Aza and the sister of the hostage Doron Steinbrecher; Liron Eldor, the father of the fallen soldier Adi Eldor who fought on October 7 in Kfar Azza and was killed in Khan Younis in February; Hodaya Nisim, an evacuee from the northern city of Kiryat Shmona who works for the Forum; Niv Cohen, a survivor of the Supernova festival and a close friend of hostage Evyatar David; and Miki Goldwasser, whose son Ehud was killed and kidnapped by Hezbollah in 2006 in the surprise attack that sparked the Second Lebanon War.

Afterward, the Forum is planning a demonstration in front of the Kirya military base in Tel Aviv. The demonstration will include a display of 133 family members and close friends of hostages with their hands bound and mouths sealed shut, a number symbolizing the number of hostages in Gaza.

All but four of the 133 were kidnapped during Hamas’s October 7 onslaught against Israel, when terrorists infiltrated the country from Gaza, killing nearly 1,200 people, mostly civilians, and kidnapping 253. Over 100 hostages were released during a brief ceasefire in the war last year.

Also held in Gaza are the bodies of two soldiers slain in a 2014 conflict, and two citizens who crossed into Gaza of their own accord in years past.

In the wake of October 7, there has been a persistent movement calling for the hostages’ release, including protests aimed at pressuring the government to accept a deal that will free them.


Some protesters gave up a traditional celebration of Passover Monday night, instead demonstrating outside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s private home in Caesarea, calling on the premier to reach a deal freeing the hostages.

Protesters outside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s residence in Caesarea call for a hostage release deal, April 24, 2024. (Barak Dor/Pro-Democracy Movement)

The protesters called the demonstration a “non-Seder” (in Hebrew also “disorder”).

Demonstrators chanted outside Netanyahu’s villa demanding the release of hostages and set their “non-Seder” table on fire.

“There’s no freedom so long as the abductees remain in Hamas’s hands. Netanyahu, who has failed to properly conduct the war and return the captives, can’t continue to lead,” they said in a statement.

“How is it possible that the Netanyahu family is celebrating in a fancy villa, when there are some Israelis held in tunnels, starving, being raped, beaten and murdered?” protesters said.

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