At a recent press conference, United States National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby confirmed that at least 22 U.S. citizens have been killed during the Hamas attacks on Israel.
However, Kirby couldn’t provide details on how or where these individuals were killed, stating that the “individual circumstances are not exactly clear.”
The violence unleashed has claimed over 1,200 lives in Israel. Additionally, at least 1,100 fatalities have been reported in the Gaza Strip, as disclosed by the Gaza Ministry of Health on Wednesday. This situation has generated profound concern and sorrow among affected families, both in Israel and in the United States.
Families disclose details of Hamas assaults
There are 17 Americans still unaccounted for, and Kirby mentioned that there’s a possibility that some of them are being held hostage by Hamas, although he didn’t provide an exact number. “We need to steel ourselves for the very distinct possibility these numbers will keep increasing,” he warned, adding that “more Americans might be part of the hostage pool.”
Addressing the families of the missing and killed Americans, Kirby said, “We are grieving with you. We’re sorrowful with you. We’re worrying with you and we’re going to do everything we can.” He also noted that the U.S. has offered assistance and counsel to Israel for hostage recovery.
While officials have not released information on the identities of the individuals killed, some family members have confirmed the deaths of their loved ones. Among them is Hayim Katsman, an academic and professor killed on Oct. 7 while assisting his neighbor and her children at Kibbutz Be’eri in Southern Israel. According to his uncle, Katsman was killed by Hamas terrorists while trying to hide the family.
Also reported was the case of Deborah Matias and her husband Shlomi, who were killed during Saturday’s attack. Ilan Troen, Deborah’s father, recounted that his daughter defended her 16-year-old son, Roten, who is currently recovering from his injuries in a hospital.
Aryeh Ziering, a 27-year-old Israeli-American, was one of the first soldiers fallen in the violent attacks in southern Israel.
His parents shared the painful moment when soldiers arrived at their door on Sunday morning to inform them about the tragic news.
With information from CBS News