Israel Working to Free Israeli Woman Held in Syria

Israeli captive has been identified as a 20-something religious Jewish woman from Modi’in Ilit

By Israel Today Staff |
Photo: Hadas Parush/Flash90

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called an emergency meeting of his cabinet yesterday evening. The topic of the gathering was classified, and the government simply said that it was a “humanitarian issue.” Israel Today’s government and military contacts revealed the real reason for the meeting, but we were barred from publishing it until now due to gag order imposed by the IDF.

A young Jewish Israeli woman crossed into Syria some two weeks ago. The reason for her doing so remains unclear. Syrian media claims she entered the country “accidentally,” but this seems unlikely.

Whatever the circumstances, she was quickly arrested, and Israel began intensive negotiations via the Russians to secure her release. These negotiations have been ongoing for weeks already.

Tuesday’s cabinet meeting was called because it appears that an agreement has been reached, and the Israeli woman will be exchanged for two Arab security prisoners in Israel, Nihal Al-Maqt and Dhiyab Qahmuz.

Al-Maqt is from the Golan Heights town of Majdal Shams, and is among that portion of the population that has long rejected Israeli rule over the once Syrian-controlled territory. She was imprisoned in 2017 for inciting insurrection.

Qahmuz is also a resident of the Golan Heights, but is an Israeli citizen. He was convicted in 2018 for working with Hezbollah to carry out a terrorist attack in Israel.

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