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Israel-Hamas: the last missing Canadian died | Middle East, the eternal conflict

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The deaths of Judith Weinstein Haggai and her partner, Gadi Haggai, have been confirmed by the Nir Oz kibbutz. (Archive photo)


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Judith Weinstein Haggai, the last Canadian missing following the surprise attack by Hamas in Israel, has died, the kibbutz where she lived has confirmed.

Ms. Weinstein Haggai was injured during the October 7 massacre and died from her injuries the same day, the Nir Oz kibbutz said in a press release on Thursday.

The body of the 70-year-old woman is believed to be in the Gaza Strip.

Judith Weinstein Haggai held Canadian, American and Israeli citizenships. She was born in New York and raised in Toronto. Twenty years ago, she moved to Israel to live with her partner, Gadi Haggai.

The 73-year-old also died during the Hamas offensive, said the community of Nir Oz, which is located near Gaza.

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Ms. Weinstein Haggai was the mother of four children and grandmother of seven.

She worked voluntarily with Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. She worked there as an English teacher for children with special educational needs or those with attention and concentration problems, the kibbutz said.

‎‏Judy was a poet, an entrepreneur and led several initiatives to promote peace in the region.

A quote from Kibbutz Nir Oz Communiqué

Judith Weinstein Haggai's family has been in limbo since Hamas' surprise attack in Israeli soil on October 7. In an interview with CBC News in November, her niece Ali Weinstein recounted what little she knew: that her aunt and her partner had been injured.

We know, because of Judith's calls […] that the two were shot, she explained.

The Israeli authorities then informed Ms. Weinstein Haggai's family that her cell phone signal had been detected in the Gaza Strip.

Believing she was one of the hostages of Hamas, Ms. Weinstein Haggai's family hoped she would be released during the humanitarian pause.

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Ali Weinstein, the niece of Judith Weinstein Haggai (Archive photo)

Those close to him still wanted, until very recently, for tensions to ease in the Middle East. They were particularly shaken by the rise in hate speech against Jews and Muslims in Canada.

We are inspired by my sister, who believed in peace and harmony, said Larry Weinstein, Judith's brother, in an interview with CBC News in early December.

< p class="Text-sc-2357a233-1 imohSo">As long as people are at each other's throats, there can be no resolution.

A quote from Larry Weinstein, the brother of Judith Weinstein Haggai

Approximately 1,200 people were killed by Hamas on October 7, and 250 were taken hostage. To date, 129 of them are still being held in Gaza, according to Israeli authorities.

A one-year truce week at the end of November resulted in the release of 105 hostages, including 80 in exchange for 240 Palestinian prisoners.

At least 21,320 people – mostly women , children and adolescents – have been killed in Gaza since the start of the Israeli response, according to Hamas authorities.

With information from Agence France-Presse, La Presse canadienne and CBC

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