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‘Biggest worry in captivity was for my parents,’ rescued Israeli hostage Noa Argamani says

By Lauren Izso, Hande Atay Alam and Michael Rios, CNN

(CNN) — Rescued Israeli hostage Noa Argamani has spoken out about her ordeal publicly for the first time since her rescue, saying in a video message that her biggest concern during captivity was for her parents.

Argamani, one of four hostages rescued by the Israeli military in a special operation in Gaza this month, spoke out in footage played at a protest in Tel Aviv on Saturday in which she also called for the return of the remaining 120 captives, who include her partner Avinatan Or.

“Although I’m home now, we can’t forget about the hostages who are still in Hamas captivity, and we must do everything possible to bring them back home,” Argamani said in the two-minute clip, which was played during a rally led by the Hostages and Missing Families Forum.

Argamani said she felt privileged to be back with her family, especially her mother, who has late-stage cancer.

“As an only child to my parents – and a daughter to a mother with a terminal illness – my biggest worry in captivity was for my parents.”

Argamani and her partner Or were abducted by Hamas at the Nova music festival on Oct. 7. Widely circulated footage of her kidnapping showed her being hoisted onto the back of a motorcycle and driven away as Or was apprehended and made to walk with his hands behind his back.

Argamani was in captivity for eight months before she and three other hostages – Almog Meir Jan, Andrey Kozlov, and Shlomi Ziv – were rescued in an Israeli operation that Gazan authorities said killed more than 200 people.

A senior Hamas official has told CNN that “no one has an idea” how many hostages are still alive.

“I want to take this opportunity to remind everyone that there are still 120 hostages in Hamas captivity. Among them is Avinatan Or, my partner, from whom I was separated at the moment of abduction,” Argamani said in the video message.

Her statement stopped short of calling on the government to strike a ceasefire deal with Hamas that could lead to the release of more hostages.

The video was played before a crowd of protesters, who have been holding large rallies in Tel Aviv for months. Such rallies often attract thousands of people, with many calling for the return of all hostages, some demanding a hostage deal, and others pushing for the ouster of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government.

During the latest demonstrations on Saturday, a group of protesters lit fires, tires and torches in the middle of the street, according to Israeli police. Authorities said they stepped in to maintain public order and extinguish the flames.

Footage from around the scene showed officers confronting the crowd and at one point, they appeared to forcefully restrain lawmaker Naama Lazimi, who took part in the rally, before they let her go.

Police did not say if anyone was arrested.

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