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23-Year-Old Woman Found Dead After Being Kidnapped by Hamas at Israeli Music Festival

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Israel has reported that Shani Louk, a 23-year-old German-Israeli woman kidnapped by Hamas at the Nova Music Festival, has been found dead.

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The ministry confirmed Louk’s death in a Monday (Oct. 30) statement on X, formerly Twitter. “We are devastated to share that [Louk’s] body,” it read, “was found and identified.” 

The statement alleged that the young woman, prior to her death, was “tortured and paraded around Gaza by Hamas terrorists.”

Louk was one of thousands of festival-goers attacked by Hamas on Oct. 7, when the terrorist group surrounded and gunned down Nova attendants that morning and throughout the day. Earlier this month, Louk’s mother, Ricarda, told CNN that she last spoke to her daughter after hearing rockets and alarms sounding in southern Israel. Shani told her mother she was at the festival, but there were few places to hide.

“She was going to her car and they had military people standing by the cars and were shooting so people couldn’t reach their cars, even to go away,” Ricarda said at the time. “And that’s when they took her.”

Per CNN, Louk’s body was captured on video prior to her death, seemingly unconscious in the back of a Hamas truck after the festival attack.

Hundreds of bodies were found onsite after the massacre, which was part of a wider Hamas attack on Israel that claimed approximately 1,400 lives. Around 200 people remain hostages of Hamas.

In retaliation, Israel has since declared war against the terrorist group, launching airstrikes on Hamas-controlled Gaza in Palestine. As of Monday (Oct. 30), the estimated death toll in Gaza stands at more than 8,000, with civilians constituting most of the dead.

As citizens across the world have called for a ceasefire in the Middle East, 120 countries voted last week for a United Nations resolution and “sustained humanitarian truce” in Gaza; meanwhile, Israel’s military announced plans to expand ground operations. On Friday (Oct. 27), two survivors of the festival attack — 27-year-old Maya Parizer and 28-year-old Jonathan Diller — spoke about their experiences to a crowd of mostly students at New York University, with Diller describing how “the missiles kept coming and coming.”

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