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President Biden and First Lady Jill Biden have expressed their sadness over the presumed death of American-Israeli Gad Haggai, a victim of the initial attack by Hamas that ignited the current conflict in Israel.

In a White House statement, Biden conveyed, “Jill and I are heartbroken by the news that American Gad Haggai is now believed to have been killed by Hamas on October 7. We continue to pray for the well-being and safe return of his wife, Judy.”

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The uncertainty surrounding the fate of Judith Weinstein and Haggai has persisted since they were caught in gunfire during their morning walk on October 7. While Weinstein’s current status is believed to be a hostage of Hamas, the Bidens recently met with Iris Weinstein Haggai, the couple’s daughter, along with other families of hostages. The President shared the families’ ordeal, describing it as “intolerable” and adding, “Today, we are praying for their four children, seven grandchildren, and other loved ones and are grieving this tragic news with them.”

This comes as reports circulate that eight Americans are among the more than 240 hostages taken by Hamas on a day that saw approximately 1,200 Israelis killed. In response, about 20,000 Palestinians in Gaza have lost their lives due to retaliatory strikes by Israeli forces.


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