His body, half-naked and unconscious, was thrown into the back of a van. Broken, in an unnatural posture, he was displayed like a trophy in the streets of Gaza. It was guarded by terrorists armed with machine guns and rockets shouting “Allahu Akbar”; the children spat at him as he passed by. Hours before, Shani Louk was laughing and dancing with her friends at a peace festival where war suddenly broke out.

The 22-year-old German-Israeli girl has been identified as the victim of the brutal images that went viral on social networks on Saturday after the large-scale attack launched by Hamas against Israel. In the absence of official confirmation, it was her own mother who recognized her daughter in the video recorded by the terrorists, thanks to her characteristic dreadlocks and tattoos. “This morning my daughter was kidnapped with a group of tourists in the south of Israel. They sent us a video where I could clearly recognize her. Unconscious, in the car with the Palestinians while they were driving towards the Gaza Strip. I ask for any help, any news “, asks cameraman Ricarda Louk in a video broadcast on the X network (formerly Twitter).

In the German city of Ravensburg, those close to Shani Louk – who lives in Tel Aviv – hope that the young woman is still alive and will be released. “The terrorists have among their victims a German girl who has always fought for peace and did not enlist in the army. A boy spat on her, so you can see how great the hatred is,” Winfried Gehr, a couple, told the newspaper BILD. from Shani’s aunt.

The fate of the young woman, who was participating with hundreds of young people in an electronic music festival near the Israeli kibbutz of Reim, remains uncertain, but the trace of her credit card places her inside Gaza. The German embassy has been involved in investigating her whereabouts.

The Government of Israel announced this Sunday that more than 100 Israelis were captured and taken to Palestinian territory. “The numbers continue to rise and with them our sadness. Our prayers are with the families of those kidnapped, murdered or injured by Hamas,” reported the Israeli Government Press Office.

Noa Argamani’s face, although distorted by terror, was also immediately recognized by her family and friends. In a video, the 25-year-old Israeli appears being kidnapped by two militants on a motorcycle while she screams through tears “don’t kill me” and asks for help from her boyfriend, who was also captured. The fate of both is unknown.

Her father, Yaakov Argamani, told Channel 12 that as soon as the alarms sounded, he contacted his daughter. An hour later a message came from her cell phone saying that she was fine and that she would call him later. “It seemed strange to me. Why would he want to contact me later?” she said. It was a friend of her daughter who sent her the video that was circulating online. “She was very scared, very scared. I always protected her and at that moment I couldn’t. I pray that everyone comes back,” he said, immersed in despair.

The land, sea and air offensive planned by Hamas included the indiscriminate taking of civilian as well as military hostages, to negotiate with Israel for the release of prisoners. A human shield made up of young people, children and even the elderly, as seen in another surreal scene: some militiamen taking an elderly Israeli woman captured and covered with a blanket of flowers to Gaza in a golf cart.

Social networks have been filled with desperate messages from relatives requesting help to find their missing since Saturday. “Our dear mother, Ditza Heiman, 84, is missing. The terrorists kidnapped her and took her to Gaza from her home in Kibbutz Nir Oz. Her neighbor heard her calling for help and came out, but there were many terrorists outside. When We tried to call her, someone from Hamas answered in Arabic. We are helpless and torn with worry, and no one has contacted us yet with information. Please spread this photo holding one of her great-grandchildren (she loves babies) so that everyone can see it, and maybe someone can help us,” a relative posted.

The images also confirmed the worst fears of Yoni Asher, who recognized his mother-in-law, his wife and his two daughters, aged three and five, being transported by Palestinian militants to Gaza. He became concerned when his wife stopped answering the phone after the attack. When he geolocated the cell phone, the signal was already coming from Khan Younis, inside the Gaza Strip.

Although the brutality of Hamas’s actions leads one to think that we are dealing with war crimes, international law imposes nuances. “The Statute of the International Criminal Court only contemplates as a war crime that carried out by a State against another State, and this is not the case of Hamas,” says Manuel Ollé, an expert lawyer in International Criminal Law.

“It would have to be reduced to a crime against humanity. If Hamas acts with the approval of the Palestinian National Authority in the kidnapping of these hostages, Israel could respond in legitimate defense according to the United Nations Charter. From the moment the aggression is illegitimate, whether it is from a state or a state organization, an exclusive surgical response could be justified to be able to release these hostages as long as it is proportionate and appropriate,” explains Ollé.