Channah Peri was released on November 24 as part of a temporary ceasefire deal brokered by Qatar and the United States between Hamas and Israel. This is the story of her capture and that of her son, Roi Popplewell, who is still captive:
On Shabbat morning, October 7, writer Ayelet Svatitzky called her 79-year-old mother, Channah Peri, to warn her that terrorists had infiltrated Kibbutz Nirim, where she grew up and her mother still lives.
Peri rushed to her safe room but quickly realized the door couldn’t be locked, according to several media accounts.
Ayelet heard a man’s voice in the background, speaking English with an Arabic accent. She hung up and called her brother Nadav, whose house is near their mother’s home, to warn him.
As she warned him to lock his doors and hide, she heard Arab-speaking voices in the background.
The next communication Ayelet had with her family was a photo sent from her mother’s phone, showing South African veteran immigrant Channah Peri in her pajamas, standing alongside Nadav in her living room. The text message read, “Hamas.”
Ayelet later found out that her older brother, Roi Popplewell, 54, was shot and killed behind his Nirim home.
According to the BBC, a third picture was later posted on Channah Peri’s Facebook page, showing her with Nadav and an armed Hamas gunman in the corner.
Ayelet told the BBC that her mother has diabetes and uses insulin daily as does Nadav, who takes pills for his condition.
Ayelet and her brothers are all British citizens. The family originally came from Wakefield, West Yorkshire.