Rescued hostage’s mom urges deal with Hamas, says ‘I am one of the lucky ones’

Renee Ghert-Zand is the health reporter and a feature writer for The Times of Israel.

Orit Meir, mother of rescued hostage Almog Meir Jan, give a statement at a press conference at Sheba Medical Center, June 10, 2024. (Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)
Orit Meir, mother of rescued hostage Almog Meir Jan, give a statement at a press conference at Sheba Medical Center, June 10, 2024. (Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)

Rescued hostage Almog Meir Jan’s mother Orit Meir and uncle Aviram Meir urge the government to reach a deal to bring the remaining 120 abductees home to Israel.

“Last night I had my first full night’s sleep in eight months… I am one of the lucky ones. There are 120 families who are waiting without being able to breathe or sleep without thinking about their loved ones in Gaza,” Orit Meir says.

“The remaining hostages need a deal to get home safely. There is a deal on the table. We ask the Israeli government to move forward with the deal, and the international community to continue to put pressure on Hamas to accept this deal and free the remaining 120 hostages now,” she continues.

Meir and her brother appear at a press conference at Sheba Medical Center in Ramat Gan, where Almog Meir Jan has been hospitalized since his rescue on Saturday from eight months of Hamas captivity in Gaza in a heroic operation by Israeli forces. Meir Jan was rescued along with Andrey Kozlov, Shlomi Ziv and Noa Argamani.

Chief Insp. Arnon Zmora, 36, from the elite Yamam counter-terrorism unit, was killed during the operation.

Referring to his sister’s birthday yesterday, Aviram Meir says: “Orit received the best possible gift. We are exceedingly happy.”

Meir thanks all those involved in planning and executing the rescue operation and reports that his nephew is in “okay” condition but is still undergoing tests and treatment at Sheba.

“We were expecting him to be in worse shape, so we are relieved,” he says. “We only wish for the other hostages’ families to finally be able to breathe as we can now.”

Almog Meir Jan’s father and Orit Meir’s ex-husband, Yossi Jan, died hours before his son was rescued.

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