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The Jerusalem Post reported on statements to the U.N. Human Rights Council facilitated by B’nai B’rith International, one by a relative of Israeli Bedouin hostages and one by a survivor of the Nova music festival massacre. This is part of our organization’s effort to amplify voices of Oct. 7 survivors and loved ones.

Read in the Jerusalem Post.

A relative of Israeli-Bedouin hostages, Yosef Hamis Ziadna and his son Hamza, and a Nova music festival survivor addressed the United Nations Human Rights Council on Thursday, as part of a talk facilitated by B’nai B’rith.

Bashir Alziadna, the nephew of Ziadna and cousin of Hamza, told the council, “I am the nephew of Youssef and the cousin of Hamza who have been held as hostages by the Hamas terrorist organization in Gaza for 172 days.

“They were kidnapped on October 7th while working in agriculture in Kibbutz Holit. The kidnapping took place as part of a brutal assault that caused the unfortunate death of 1,200 people, including my cousin Abed Alrahman and his wife.

“In total, 17 civilians from the Bedouin society were killed on that day, and six were kidnapped. All of them are peaceful people who wished for a permanent solution and never wished that anyone, either Israeli or Palestinian, would be harmed. The Bedouin community in Israel is devastated by the attack of October 7th. We won’t be able to recover until all the hostages return home—until we can see them until we can hold them.”

Alziadna went on to say he prayed that the Islamic holy month of Ramadan would see all the hostages returned home.

Belal and Aisha Zaidna, the son and daughter of Zaidna, were released in November as part of a hostage-for-prisoner exchange.

Nova music festival survivor addresses the UN

Nova festival survivor Noam Mazal Ben David also addressed the council, telling the parties of how she survived after hiding in a bin while terrorists killed 12 people hiding alongside her – including her partner.

“I came to the Nova festival on October 7th in order to paint. My partner, David Yair Shalom Newman, came with me,” David said. “Just before 6 A.M. everyone was on the dance floor and it was tremendously powerful. All of a sudden, we heard rocket fire and interceptions. There were bursts of automatic gunfire, RPGs and grenades all around us. We saw people falling. It was like a horror movie.

“When the gunfire got closer, we jumped into the dumpster and put our heads down. I was scared to death. We tried to stay quiet and unnoticed, but a terrorist spotted us. David threw me towards the edge of the dumpster and told me to hide. I buried myself into the garbage. We were 16 people [there] for four and a half hours. I cannot describe the fear. I heard ‘Allahu Akbar’ and the first terrorist shot three bullets into David’s chest. I heard his last breath. I wanted to jump and rescue him but another volley of shots began and I was shot in the pelvis.”

“Only four of us in the dumpster survived. I feel David with me every moment. Thousands of innocent Israelis like me are wounded and disabled because of the crimes of Hamas on October 7th.”

B’nai B’rith amplifying survivor voices

B’nai B’rith’s Office of United Nations Affairs expressed on their website that they appreciated the bravery of the survivors and thanked them for coming forward to speak “critical truths to power” at the UN.

The organization has previously facilitated both a close relative of the Bibas family and released hostage Aviva Siegel, whose husband remains captive, to speak to the UN.

“It is past time for the international community to put an end to the terrorism that perpetuates conflict and endless suffering in the Middle East and beyond,” B’nai B’rith wrote on their website in relation to the talks.