Margit Shnaider Silberman and her husband José Luis (Yossi) Silberman, both in their 60s, were murdered on October 7, as Hamas gunmen entered Kibbutz Nir Oz and committed a brutal massacre, killing or abducting some 180 of the community’s 400 residents.
Yossi, an Argentinian native who had lived in Israel for 40 years, was among the first to cultivate the kibbutz’s crops. Margit, a Peruvian citizen, immigrated to Israel some 15 years ago. The couple were last seen being abducted from their home in the kibbutz during the onslaught.
On the day of the attack, a video released by Hamas on social media showed the couple alive. Yossi Shnaider, Margit’s nephew, expressed concern to the Peruvian press about her health, as she required numerous medications daily for her Parkinson’s disease. Sadly, the Silbermans were later found dead and were officially identified on October 21, with their funeral following two days later.
Giselle Edelstein, Yossi’s niece, told Argentina’s newspaper La Nación that the couple’s house was near the kibbutz entrance, making it a likely initial target. She speculated that the family was caught off guard by the attack.
The Silbermans’ daughter, Shiri Bibas, 32, her husband Yarden Bibas, 34, and their two young children, nine-month-old Kfir and four-year-old Ariel, also residents of Nir Oz, were taken captive to Gaza.
A distressing video shows Shiri holding her two young boys close to her chest while surrounded by Hamas militants. Another video depicts Yarden with a head injury, forcibly taken away on a motorcycle — the first indication since the massacre of what had happened to Yarden, said Edelstein.
In mid-November, Yarden’s sister, Ofri Bibas Levy, traveled to Geneva, Switzerland, with other family members of those kidnapped by Hamas. Their mission was to engage with senior officials from the World Health Organization and the International Red Cross. Expressing her determination, Levy told Reuters, “Somebody has to go [to where they are being held] and find out what’s their condition.”