Thomas Hand, father of Emily, who turned 9 in Hamas captivity last week, was among family members of hostages that addressed the crowd at the ‘Never Again is Now’ rally in London on Sunday, which saw thousands of Christians stand in solidarity with the Jewish community and call for the release of all hostages held captive by Hamas.
“She’s only 9 years old,” Thomas Hand told the crowd whilst fighting back tears, “Her place is at home with us. In her own room; in her own bed. Emily and all the hostages deserve to be back home in the loving arms of their families. Please, help me bring my sweet, little, innocent Emily home….We’re all living in a nightmare. I don’t think any of us in Israel will ever be the same again after that day. It’s going to take generations to truly fix us. Please help in any way you can.”
The Israel-flag waving crowd paused to join a sober rendition of Happy Birthday to mark Emily’s birthday.
Noam Sagi , whose mother Ada Sagi, 75, was kidnapped from Kibbutz Nir Oz, reminded the rally that Hamas was holding both babies and elderly people. “The youngest is 10-months old and the oldest is 84. The elderly are all retired. They all need medical attention. They worked hard all their lives to slow down and spend time with their grandchildren. Now, they find themselves in tunnels with no air, no daylight, no medicine.”
At the end of the rally, Elai Sagi, grandson of hostage Ada Sagi, held up a torch – the Torch of Life – which was first lit by the Western Wall on November 7, marking one month since the terrorist atrocities. It has since been to America, France, Italy and Switzerland before coming to London. The torch will return to Israel after all the hostages come home.