Ricarda Louk, the mother of Shani Louk, a young woman abducted by Hamas during a music festival in Israel, has officially confirmed her daughter’s tragic demise. The heart-wrenching revelation came after the Israeli military informed Ricarda Louk that a DNA sample obtained from a skull bone fragment conclusively matched Shani’s.
Despite this confirmation, Shani’s body remains undiscovered. Her sister, Adi Louk, also made the painful announcement on social media. In an Instagram post, Adi disclosed that Shani had fallen victim to the “massacre at Re’im”, referencing the Hamas attack near the Gaza Strip in southern Israel that occurred on October 7.
However, its unclear from where and when the fragment of Shani’s skull was discovered. Consequently, Israel’s foreign ministry expressed its deep sorrow on social media.
Shani, 22 years old, had been attending the festival near Kibbutz Re’im when Hamas armed assailants opened fire, plunging the event into chaos. The attack resulted in over 260 casualties, according to Israeli authorities, with many individuals taken hostage.
Shortly after the incident, a distressing video circulated widely on social media, depicting the body of a young woman being paraded through the streets on the back of a truck, surrounded by assailants and others shouting “Allahu Akbar” (God is Greatest). Shani was identified by her family through her dreadlocks and distinctive tattoos.
While there had been speculation about her fate, Shani’s mother, at the time, believed her daughter was still alive. In a plea for information shared online, Ricarda Louk mentioned receiving a video showing her unconscious daughter with Palestinians in a car driving around the Gaza Strip.
During an interview with the German TV news channel RTL/ntv on Monday, Ricarda Louk shared her heartbreaking assumption that her daughter had passed away since October 7, possibly due to a gunshot wound during the Hamas attack. She added that, at the very least, Shani didn’t suffer, expressing some relief in having closure.
The conflict between Israel and Hamas resulted in over 1,400 casualties, according to Israeli authorities. The identification of some individuals has been delayed due to the challenging condition of some bodies. Over 220 people are believed to have been taken hostage, with four released thus far.
Meanwhile, the Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza reports that more than 8,000 individuals have lost their lives since the onset of Israel’s retaliatory bombings.