Netanyahu appoints new envoy to retrieve captives, remains of soldiers in Gaza

Behind The News

BREAKING: PM Netanyahu announced the appointment of Yaron Blum as the pointman in efforts to retrieve the remains of two IDF soldiers and to bring home 2 Israelis being held captive by Hamas in Gaza.

Blum is replacing Lior Lotan, who was appointed by Netanyahu to lead negotiations for the release of the remains of IDF soldiers Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin, who were killed during a 50-day war with Hamas in 2014.

The terror group is also believed to be holding three live Israeli citizens — Avraham Abera Mengistu, Hisham al-Sayed and Juma Ibrahim Abu Ghanima — who are all said to have entered the Gaza Strip of their own accord.

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Blum served some 20 years in the Shin Bet and currently is a fellow at IDC’s International Institute for Counter-Terrorism.

Channel 2 reported that Netanyahu selected Blum, even though he was not Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman’s first choice.

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