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17 trabajadores tailandeses liberados por Hamás regresan emocionados a casa

Seventeen Thai workers who were held captive by the militant group Hamas have been reunited with their families and friends in an emotional homecoming at Bangkok’s international airport. The workers were among the 23 Thais who were released, while six remain in Israel due to medical reasons. Thai authorities reported that nine other hostages are still being held in Gaza.

Ratree Sampan, the mother of one of the released workers, expressed her relief at seeing her son again after fearing that he was dead during the conflict. The workers were part of a group of 30,000 mostly agricultural workers in Israel before the Hamas attack on October 7, which resulted in the deaths of hundreds of Israelis and 38 Thais.

Since the outbreak of the war, around 9,000 Thai workers have been voluntarily repatriated, but some have expressed a desire to return to Israel due to the higher wages they can earn there. The Thai workers are recruited from some of the poorest regions of Thailand, and they accept jobs in Israel to earn up to five times more than what they would earn back home. They were initially recruited to replace Palestinians who had been doing similar work in Israel.

The conflict has also seen a ceasefire and the release of hostages by both sides, with Hamas releasing 81 hostages, mostly Israeli citizens, while Israel has released 180 Palestinian prisoners. The situation remains tense, with Israel vowing to crush the military capabilities of Hamas, and many hostages still in captivity. But for the families of the 17 workers who have returned home, it is a moment of relief and gratitude.

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