Hostages in Gaza yet to receive medicines from Qataris
Red Cross vehicles carry released hostages at the Rafah Crossing between Egypt and the Gaza Strip, Nov. 24, 2023. (Photo: Atia Mohammed/Flash90)

France delivered the medicines to Doha on Saturday • Qatari leader pushes for a two-state solution in Davos.

JNS Staff Report
January 16, 2024

France has sent badly needed medicines to Qatar for Israeli hostages held by Hamas in Gaza, the European nation’s embassy in Tel Aviv confirmed to the Times of Israel on Tuesday.

President Emmanuel Macron ordered the foreign ministry in Paris to make a list of medicines for 45 captives who need them and who have been hostages for more than 100 days. They were purchased, and delivered to Doha on Saturday.

The medicines have yet to reach the Gaza Strip. They are slated to be handed over to the International Committee of the Red Cross or another third party for entry into the coastal enclave.

“We will do everything to bring everyone home; you can count on me,” Macron said in a video message on Saturday to tens of thousands of people at a rally in Tel Aviv for the hostages. “The French nation is determined that … all the hostages of the October 7 terrorist attacks are freed. France does not abandon its children. That is why we have to resume negotiations again and again for their release.”

Franco-Mexican tourist Orión Hernández Radoux, 32, is among the hostages still held in Gaza. Terrorists kidnapped him from the Supernova music festival on Oct. 7.

The Red Cross has failed to visit any of the hostages being held by Hamas. One hundred six hostages remain in Gaza out of some 240 kidnapped during the Oct. 7 massacre in the northwestern Negev. More than 100 were released as part of a deal in November, and many are believed to be dead.

Israel secured the agreement with Qatar for the medicines on Friday; a French official told the Times that Jerusalem is overseeing the security aspects of the operation.

The Hostages and Missing Families Forum, a group representing relatives of the captives that organized the Tel Aviv rally, said it would demand “visual proof” that the medicine reached the hostages.

As part of the deal, medicine will also be allowed to enter the Strip for Palestinians, with the Hamas terrorist group saying that the Gazans will be given priority. “Some medicine will be used to treat Israeli prisoners,” Osama Hamdan, a Hamas terrorist leader in Lebanon said, according to France 24.

Qatar pushes for two-state solution

Qatari Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani called for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, on Tuesday.

“It needs to be time-bound, it needs to be irreversible,” he said.

Qatari Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani. Credit: U.S. Department of State via Wikipedia.

“All of us, we are showing our willingness to extend our hands, to have a peace agreement with Israel, if they are willing to engage genuinely in a process that will make the Palestinians have their state at the end,” Sheikh Mohammed added.

Doha is under increasing pressure for hosting Hamas leaders and for its ties to the terrorist group, including what it might have known in advance about the Oct. 7 massacre. Sheikh Mohammed said in Davos that Hamas is part of the Palestinian political system, adding that “the Palestinians are the only ones who have a choice to have them as part of a resolution or not.”

He labelled Israel’s government as “extremist” and accused it of calling for the genocide of Palestinians, a charge that Jerusalem rejects as a blood libel. He also accused the IDF of carpet bombing Gaza, claiming that “Gaza is not there anymore.” The military says that the aerial strikes are against terrorists and not aimed at civilians.

“We need to address how to end the war as soon as possible, how to get the hostages released and also the Palestinian [security] prisoners, to address the issue in the West Bank,” Sheikh Mohammed said.

(Qatar is a key mediator for the release of the hostages.)

He added that efforts to forge another hostage exchange deal are “going through a lot of difficulty.”

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