'I was afraid to be raped in front of my son': Former hostage tells UN

During Security Council meeting on Hamas's sexual violence, Keren Munder echoed the horror of captivity: 'We knew terrible things happened to women; I feared it would happen to me too'

Keren Munder, abducted on October 7 from Kibbutz Nir Oz along with her 9-year-old son, Ohad, spoke on Monday about the horrors of her time in captivity. "I feared terrorists might do something to me, even in front of my son."
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In a special session of the UN Security Council addressing Hamas's sexual violence Munder said the hostages were aware of the terrible things were happening to women captives. "I was kidnapped cruelly by Hamas. Terrorists ransacked our home and set the furniture ablaze. I didn't want to leave my son; he was so frightened," she said.
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קרן מונדר באו"ם
קרן מונדר באו"ם
Former hostage Keren Munder speaking in front of the UN
"They pushed us out and threatened us; my beautiful kibbutz felt like a war zone," she continued. "Upon arrival to Gaza, we were dressed in sleepwear and were blindfolded. Every move we made, we thought we'd be killed by civilians or terrorists who saw us. After a week, they transferred us to another location in a hospital. There were ten of us in the room, five women and five children."
She recounted the harrowing conditions upon her return: "We shared one basin, and used trash cans as toilets, especially at night, in front of everyone. We had no choice. We lost all privacy. People suffered from detentions and beatings." She further shared, "The women were mothers not only to their own children but to all the children there, as they were without their mothers. We tried to comfort them emotionally. We had to wait for hours for someone to open the door to the restroom," Munder said.
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אברהם, רותי, קרן מונדר ואוהד מונדר זכרי
אברהם, רותי, קרן מונדר ואוהד מונדר זכרי
Ruti and Avraham Munder - who is still in captivity, Ohad and Keren Munder
"We had to collaborate with the terrorists. The thought of a terrorist doing something to me as a woman, even in front of my son, crossed my mind more than once. We knew terrible things happened to women; I feared it would happen to me too. There's nothing worse than the fear of captivity. War was happening right outside the door; we feared for our lives every minute. We lost our identity and our humanity. The children lost their innocence."
Munder's father, Avraham Munder, 79, is still held hostage in Gaza. "My father is still there. What if someone you love is abducted by monsters? Please, do not turn a blind eye. We need to bring them home now. As a woman, as a mother, we need to do everything."
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