(JNS.org) The IDF confirmed Sunday that it has recovered the bodies of five Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) terrorists in the aftermath of Israel’s destruction a Palestinian cross-border attack tunnel last week.
“During the ongoing work in the area [of the destroyed tunnel], the bodies of five terrorists were uncovered,” the IDF said in a statement.
Among the Palestinian terrorists killed in the IDF operation were two senior PIJ commanders, Arafat Abu Murshid and his deputy Hassan Abu-Hassanein.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday that Israel would not release the terrorists’ bodies until Israeli civilians held captive by the Gaza-ruling terror group Hamas, as well as the remains of two slain IDF soldiers, are returned to Israel.
“We will bring our boys back home, and there are no free gifts,” said Netanyahu.
Hamas is believed to be holding Ethiopian Israeli Avera Mengistu as well as Bedouin Israelis Hisham al-Sayed and Jumaa Abu Ghanima. The terror group is also holding the bodies of Staff Sgt. Oron Shaul and Lt. Hadar Goldin, who were killed in Gaza in separate battles during the 2014 Israel-Hamas war.