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Friday Countdown: Israel’s Hostage Release Showdown!

Israeli officials have announced that the release of two Jewish hostages, who have been held captive in Syria for over four years, will not take place before this Friday. The two hostages, Avraham and Elchanan Tenenbaum, have been held in an unknown location since their abduction in October of 2000. They were taken during a night-raid operation, gainst a Hezbollah stronghold in Lebanon, and demand for their release has been a major distraction for the Israeli government. The Israeli authorities have known that the Tenenbaum’s are alive but no further information has been made available. Only last week did Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declare that he had knowledge of their whereabouts and had been negotiating for their release with the Syrian government. It has been a long and complicated process, as Netanyahu himself admits, but a deal for the release was expected to take place this Thursday or Friday this week. However, these expectations have not been met and Israeli officials have now confirmed that the release of the hostages will not take place before this Friday. It is still unclear as to when the hostages will be released or what the terms of the deal are. This news is being greeted with disappointment from the Tenenbaum family and the public more generally in Israel. The Israeli government is currently unable to provide any further information on when the hostages will be freed and all talks of a release remain on hold.

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