Miracle in Gaza: Woman believes boyfriend died in Israel attack, finds him alive and well

Photo courtesy of BBC News

Love prevails as a woman, who mourned the loss of her boyfriend in the 7 October attack on Israel, now celebrates his imminent reunion.

Two days after the 7 October attack, Kittiya Thuengsaeng received the devastating news that her boyfriend, Wichai Kalapat, was believed to be among the casualties. The social media posts mourning the man she planned to marry next year flooded the Internet.

However, hope flickered when the official list of the deceased was published, and Wichai’s name was conspicuously absent. The anguish of uncertainty lingered as Kittiya embarked on a desperate wait for information.

In a surprising turn of events, Kittiya discovered only five days ago that Wichai was not among the dead but, in fact, one of the 26 Thai citizens being held hostage inside Gaza.

Related news

Watching television images of the 10 Thai hostages released from Gaza on Friday, Kittiya’s heart skipped a beat. There, amidst the freed hostages, was Wichai Kalapat, alive and well.

With approximately 30,000 Thai nationals working in Israel, anxiety grips other families awaiting news about their loved ones. The release of 26 hostages brings a glimmer of hope to those who have endured a month of uncertainty.

Thongkoon Onkaew, mother of Natthaporn Onkaew, and Wanida Maarsa, wife of Anucha Angkaew, express their hopes and prayers for the safety of their family members, reported BBC News.

Political landscape

Confusion arised as Thailand’s Prime Minister initially announced 12 hostages had been released, later contradicted by a Qatari government official stating the number is 10.

The release of Thai nationals stands apart from an agreement set to free 50 Israeli hostages during a temporary ceasefire. Israel, in reciprocation, releases 39 Palestinian detainees.

Thailand’s foreign ministry ensures medical supervision for the freed citizens in Israeli hospitals, restricting access to relatives for 48 hours. The Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs extends congratulations and promises swift repatriation.

In related news, a prisoner exchange agreement between Israel and Hamas sparked questions about the fate of Thai hostages, yet the Foreign Affairs Ministry remains uncertain about their release. The ministry has been unable to ascertain whether any of the Thai workers detained by Hamas will be among the initial 50 hostages set free. Read more about this story HERE.

Thailand News

Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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