The President of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Mirjana Spoljaric, visited the Gaza Strip on Monday where she was supposed to coordinate visits by Red Cross personnel to hostages who are being held by Hamas.
However, in a video she released after the visit, Spoljaric barely mentioned the hostages and mostly spoke about the plight of Gazan residents.
Only towards the end of the nearly two-minute video, did the Red Cross chief briefly mentioned the hostages abducted by Hamas during its October 7 attack on Israel.
“We have to protect the rights of hostages. The ICRC will do its utmost to help alleviate and reduce the suffering but we can’t do this alone,” she said.
Before the start of her visit, Spoljaric wrote on X, “The hostages must be released and ICRC allowed to safely visit them.”
Spoljaric’s visit to Gaza follows her recent visit to Qatar where she met with the head of Hamas’ political bureau, Ismail Haniyeh.
To date, the Red Cross has not been permitted to visit the hostages who have been held by Hamas in Gaza since its deadly terrorist attack against Israel on October 7.
The ceasefire agreement which saw Hamas release some of the hostages it was holding included a clause which was supposed to allow the International Committee of the Red Cross to visit the hostages who remain in captivity. This, however, did not happen.
Last week, Health Minister Uriel Busso blasted the Red Cross and said that it is “ignoring with complete insensitivity requests to transfer and make available information to Magen David Adom regarding the safety of the hostages.”
“It is time to speak with a clear voice, Hamas is a terrorist organization that slaughtered and kidnapped women, children and the elderly. We need an organization that will protect and give hope to the families of the captives, and provide medical information. Any other conduct is consent and support for terrorism,” he added.