Over 230 Empty Beds at Jerusalem City Hall: A Stark Reminder of Missing Hostages

In the center of Jerusalem’s City Hall stands the haunting scene of more than 230 empty beds, symbolizing the babies, children, and elderly who were abducted from their homes by Hamas and taken to Gaza on October 7th. It’s a mute cry of anguish from the hostage families who organized the display in coordination with the Jerusalem Municipality and volunteers to bring continued focus to the kidnappings. 

The Mayor of Jerusalem, Moshe Leon, joined the families of the hostages to stand for a moment of silence and sing Hatikvah, Israel’s national anthem.  

Yoseph Haddad, an Arab-Israeli journalist and social media influencer, spoke with the families of the hostages to shed light on their plight.  

Haddad told CBN News,“I’ve heard here many stories of families that they have kidnapped people in Gaza right now, a story of a nine-year-old kid who celebrated his birthday last week in the terror tunnel of Hamas. Why a kid? A nine-year-old kid needs to celebrate with a terrorist and not with his family. Why is he sleeping in the tunnel and not in his bed? What do we need to shout at more? Do we need to scream? Do we need to cry? Do you want to see blood in order to wake up?” 

Mai Albini shared the story of his quick-thinking 79-year-old grandfather, Chaim Perez, who helped save his wife’s life when they were hiding in their bomb shelter during the October 7th massacre by Hamas. 

“He was hiding with his wife,” Albini recalled. “And he realized he could not hold the terrorists for too long. So he slammed the door open and he hit the terrorist. The terrorist fell on the ground, and he got scared and ran away. In the meantime, my grandfather realized that he’s going to come back and with back up. And he took this time to hide his wife behind the couch.” 

Tragically, Abini’s grandfather, Chaim, is among the hundreds still being held hostage in Gaza. Ironically, Perez was part of an organization that transported Gazan civilians to Israeli hospitals. 

Haddad told us he has a strong and clear message for the American people. 

“My message from here to everyone is very simple. You need to stand with us,” Haddad exhorted. “You need to stand with Israel. Because if you don’t stand with us, if you do not stand with Israel, if you don’t stand with the good guys, you’re going to be next. Understand that, we are only one one step in the bigger plan. You’re next. If we don’t win, not only we lose. You lose. Bring our hostages back home. Now!” 

Please take a moment to pray for the hostages and their families.