The men were identified by Israeli officials as Chaim Peri (79-years old), Yoram Metzger (80-years old) and Amiram Cooper (84 years old).
The Al Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, published a video on Monday of three elderly Israeli captives being held in Gaza.
The men were identified by Israeli officials as Chaim Peri (79-years old), Yoram Metzger (80-years old) and Amiram Cooper (84 years old), according to an Al Jazeera report on Monday.
In the video, which was published via Telegram, Peri said that there are other elderly people being held captive, with many suffering from chronic illnesses. He pleaded to Israel to not allow them to grow old in captivity.
He also spoke of being abandoned by Israel and implored his government to ensure their release by any means necessary.
“We don’t understand why we have been abandoned here. You have to release us from here, it does not matter the cost,” he said.
“We don’t want to be casualties as a direct result of the [Israeli forces] airstrikes. Release us with no conditions,” he added.
Peri’s plea follows news on Saturday of Israel launching an internal inquiry after three Israeli captives were killed by Israeli forces. All three men emerged from a building in Gaza’s Shujaiyeh area. They were shirtless, signalling that they were unarmed, and it was later revealed that one captive was waving a makeshift white flag.
After the incident, Israel’s Lieutenant Herzl Halevi said that “the shooting at hostages was against the rules of engagement. It is forbidden to shoot at someone who raises a white flag and seeks to surrender”.
Israeli forces have been accused of indiscriminately killing Palestinians in the occupied territories, including civilians fleeing to safety.
Analysts say that the new video by the Al Qassam Brigades will pile further pressure on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has pledged to return the Israeli captives and dismantle Hamas.
Meanwhile, Israel has denounced the Qassam move, with Israeli army spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari describing it as a “criminal terrorist video [showing] Hamas’ cruelty towards innocent, very elderly civilians, who are in need of medical care”.