British-Israeli hostage Nadav Popplewell confirmed killed in Gaza amid US ceasefire pressures

Nadav Popplewell
-Credit: (Image: PA)

A British-Israeli individual captured during the attacks in October last year is among four hostages confirmed dead in Gaza.

Last month Hamas released a video saying British-Israeli Nadav Popplewell had died after being wounded in an Israeli airstrike. He has now been confirmed dead, along with Amiram Cooper, Yoram Metzger, and Haim Peri, according to the Israeli Defence Forces.

The news intensifies pressure on the Israeli administration to accept a ceasefire proposal by the US, which could facilitate the return of the remaining hostages. President Joe Biden has put forward a three-phase plan, urging Israel to consent to the exchange of hostages for an extended truce in the conflict-ridden region, reports the Mirror.

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It is believed that approximately 80 hostages are still alive in Gaza, with the remains of another 43.

Israel's military spokesman, Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari, said the four hostages were killed “months ago” while they were together, during the army's operation in Khan Younis in central Gaza. Recent operations had finally allowed the military to gather enough intelligence to pronounce them dead.

Their bodies are still being held by Hamas. Rear Adm Hagari said: “We are checking all of the options. There are a lot of questions.”

Amiram Cooper, Yoram Metzger and Chaim Peri
Amiram Cooper, Yoram Metzger and Chaim Peri -Credit:No credit

The Hostages Forum, a grassroots group representing the families of the hostages, said: “It is time to end this cycle of sacrifice and neglect. Their murders in captivity is a mark of disgrace and a sad reflection on the significance of delaying previous deals."

Of the other men confirmed dead, Cooper was an economist, Metzger helped to found the kibbutz winery and Peri built the community's art gallery and sculpture garden.

Sharone Lifschitz, whose mum was freed but whose dad is still captive, said: “We know the government of Israel has done an awful lot to delay reaching a deal and that has cost the lives of many people.”

However Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned there would be no permanent ceasefire until Hamas’ abilities to govern and fight are destroyed.