A woman whose lifeless and semi-naked body was paraded in the back of a Hamas pick-up truck as militants sat on top of her and jeered following their violent incursion was last night identified as a German tattoo artist. Shani Louk, 30, was at a music festival for peace when she was seized by terrorists as they attacked Israel in a surprise assault which has left at least 480 people dead and 3,200 injured.
Her body was filmed splayed in the back of a truck, with one leg at an unnatural angle, terrorists sitting around it and supporters of the group cheering, running alongside and spitting on her. It comes as Shani’s mother, Ricarda, released a heartbreaking video begging for help to find out what happened to her daughter.
Holding a picture of Shani on her mobile phone, she said: ‘This morning my daughter, Shani Nicole Louk, a German citizen, was kidnapped with a group of tourists in southern Israel by Palestinian Hamas. ‘We were sent a video in which I could clearly see our daughter unconscious in the car with the Palestinians and them driving around the Gaza Strip.
‘I ask you to send us any help or any news. Thank you very much.’ Hamas had claimed the body was a female Israeli soldier – but it was last night confirmed to be Shani by her cousin Tomasina Weintraub-Louk, who told the media that the family recognized her distinctive leg tattoos and dreadlocked hair.
She said: ‘We have heard nothing. We are hoping for positive news. It is definitely Shani. She was at a music festival for peace. This is a nightmare for our family.’ The tragedy comes as Palestinian militants launched its worst onslaught for 50 years on Saturday by unprecedented land, sea and air attacks – even using hang gliders to avoid detection.
In a coordinated, multi-pronged assault, Palestinian terrorists crossed into Israel from the Gaza Strip, seizing settlements and capturing and murdering civilians celebrating a Jewish holiday. Dozens of people are feared to have been snatched off the street and returned to Gaza, or simply killed on the spot. The music festival attended by Shani was one of the first sites to be attacked by the terrorist group, with reports suggesting dozens were killed on sight with more taken hostage by the militants.
In a second video widely shared on social media, a woman screaming ‘Don’t kill me!’ can be seen being driven off on a motorbike by a gunman. The lady was identified as Noa Argamani, 25, a student who was seized at the same outdoor peace festival she had attended with her boyfriend close to the border.
Esther Borochov, who fled the rave party, said she survived by playing dead in a car after the driver trying to help her escape was shot point blank. Bodies of Israeli civilians were strewn across the streets of Sderot in southern Israel, near Gaza, surrounded by broken glass. The bodies of a woman and a man were sprawled across the front seats of a car.
‘I went out, I saw loads of bodies of terrorists, civilians, cars shot up. A sea of bodies, inside Sderot along the road, other places, loads of bodies,’ said Shlomi from Sderot. Terrified Israelis, barricaded into safe rooms, recounted their plight by phone on live TV.