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Hamas says seeking to free 8 Russian-Israeli hostages — Russian news agencies

By AFP - Oct 28,2023 - Last updated at Oct 28,2023

MOSCOW — Hamas is trying to locate eight Russian-Israeli dual citizens among nearly 230 taken hostage during the Palestinian militants' attack on Israel after Moscow's request to free them, Russian news agencies reported Saturday.

Russia has good relations with Hamas, which it does not consider a terror group, and has launched a diplomatic effort to try to free hostages held in Gaza.

Israel has said it believes 229 people were taken hostage by Hamas during its massive attack on Israel on October 7.

"From the Russian side, via the foreign ministry, we received a list of citizens that have dual citizenship," senior Hamas representative Moussa Abu Marzook was cited as saying by the RIA Novosti news agency.

"We are looking for those people... It is hard but we are looking. And when we find them, we will let them go."

"We are very attentive to this list and will process it carefully because we consider Russia to be a closest friend," he said.

"About the peaceful citizens that were taken and that are now in Gaza, we treat them as guests," claimed Abu Marzook, who arrived in Russia on Thursday for talks on the hostages.

"We will free them as soon as there will be the conditions," he said referring to the Russian-Israelis.

The Hamas official told Russian media there was no progress on international talks to free the hostages.

He was quoted as saying "dozens of Western and regional officials came to us to demand the liberation of the detainees."

The civilians were taken as "a result of chaos", he said.

The Kremlin admitted earlier this week it had not succeeded in freeing Russian hostages and that it did not know how many of its citizens had been taken.


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