Sara Netanyahu denies complaining that freed hostages ‘didn’t even thank us’

Prime Minister’s Office rejects TV report’s claim; several freed hostages post on social media: ‘Sorry I was kidnapped’

Sara Netanyahu attends a prayer for the return of the hostages held in Gaza, at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, March 21, 2024. (Chaim Goldberg/Flash90)
Sara Netanyahu attends a prayer for the return of the hostages held in Gaza, at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, March 21, 2024. (Chaim Goldberg/Flash90)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office denied Thursday that his wife Sara Netanyahu had complained that the more than 100 hostages freed from Hamas captivity during a truce in late November did not adequately express their gratitude to her and her husband.

According to Channel 12 news, the premier’s wife told an unidentified opposition lawmaker during a recent meeting to discuss a potential hostage deal: “Did you see how many hostages came back? They didn’t even say thanks to us.”

Netanyahu’s office adamantly denied that his wife had made such comments, saying the report “contains lies and far-fetched fabrications.”

During the October 7 onslaught, terrorists kidnapped 253 people in Israel, including a number of dead bodies, and brought them to Gaza. Under a weeklong truce in November, Hamas released 105 civilians, with four released prior to that. Three hostages have been rescued alive by IDF troops, and the bodies of 11 hostages have been recovered from the Strip, including three who were mistakenly killed by the military in mid-December.

It is believed that 130 of the hostages abducted on October 7 remain in Gaza, and the IDF has confirmed the deaths of 33 of those still being held, citing intelligence and findings obtained by troops operating in Gaza. The families of those held hostage and many of those freed from captivity have held months of protests and rallies demanding the government agree to another deal to release their loved ones.

Einav Zangauker, the mother of hostage Matan Zangauker, said in response to the report: “I am happy that Mrs. Sara Netanyahu is responsible for bringing back the hostages. I would be happy if she would take responsibility for the kidnapping of my son Matan and his abandonment, and I would be more than happy if she will be responsible for bringing Matan home.”

People walk by photographs of Israelis still held hostage by Hamas terrorists in Gaza, at Hostages Square in Tel Aviv. March 14, 2024. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Sara Netanyahu attended a prayer service Thursday evening at the Western Wall in Jerusalem on behalf of the hostages. Asked by a Channel 12 reporter to respond to her purported remarks, she did not react.

Liam Or, who was released in November after being taken hostage in the October 7 terror attack, took a swipe at Netanyahu over the report.

“Sorry I was kidnapped,” he wrote on his Instagram account alongside a screenshot from the Channel 12 report.

The reunion of siblings Maya and Itay Regev, released from Gaza days apart, with a third sibling at Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba, November 30, 2023, in handout photos by the hospital. (Courtesy)

Fellow freed hostage Maya Regev wrote on her own social media: “Sorry that I was kidnapped. And I’m even more sorry that this is what they’re dealing with instead of bringing my brothers and sisters home.”

Yagil Yaakov, 13, who was kidnapped along with his brother and freed in November, and whose father’s body is still being held hostage, wrote on Instagram: “Sorry I was kidnapped. Next time I’ll fund my own vacation in Gaza.”

Yonatan Shamriz, the brother of Alon Shamriz, one of the three hostages mistakenly shot dead by IDF troops in Gaza, wrote on X in response: “The owners of the Versailles wedding hall responded: Nobody has thanked us yet for the appetizers” — a reference to the infamous Versailles wedding hall disaster in Jerusalem in 2001, in which 23 people were killed when the floor of the building collapsed during a wedding.

Most Popular
read more: