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Release Plea: Mexican Orion Hernández Abducted at Nova Fest

The bodies of three hostages were recovered from the Gaza Strip by Israeli forces on Thursday night. The victims, Shani Louk, Amit Buskila and Yitzhak Gelernter, were reportedly murdered by Hamas while attempting to escape from the Nova music festival on October 7. Their bodies were subsequently taken to Gaza, according to chief military spokesperson, Daniel Hagari. Among the hostages was German-Israeli fashion influencer and tattoo artist, Shani Louk, who was the girlfriend of Mexican Orion Hernández. Hernández was also kidnapped at the Nova Peace Music Festival on October 7, 2023, in the Gaza Strip. This has led to renewed pleas from his family to the Foreign Ministry, in the hope that Hernández is still alive.

Orion Hernández, a young man with Franco-Mexican nationality, hails from Tulum, Quintana Roo. His father and grandmother are the founders of "Don Cafeto", the oldest and most renowned restaurant in Tulum. Noé Peniche Patrón, a former Israeli government associate, expressed his hope that the difficulty of negotiating with terrorists would be understood. He emphasized that Mexico and Israel support a Palestinian state, but not a terrorist state like Hamas. The recent events, he said, validate Israel's stance.

Patrón described Hernández as a young man with a passion for electronic music, world travel, and music festivals. This passion led him to the Nova Peace Music Festival in the Israeli desert, near the Gaza Strip. Despite not being Jewish, Hernández holds dual Mexican and French nationality. Patrón expressed hope that Hernández is still alive, citing encouraging information from his mother.

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Patrón revealed that they have received phone calls from Hernández's cell phone, with Arabic voices suggesting a potential dialogue. Patrón has visited Tulum to speak with Hernández's father and grandmother and to pray for his safe return. During his visit, he learned that Hernández's three-year-old daughter and her Iranian mother had visited in December. Patrón clarified that both this relationship and the one with Shany, the German girl, were casual holiday relationships in Tulum, Quintana Roo.

Hernández's father, Emilio, resides in Santiago, Chile, while his mother lives in Paris. His grandmother is the only family member in Mexico. She sent a picture of her welfare card and expressed her love for both AMLO and Orion, as they give her a sense of security.

Patrón relayed that AMLO had spoken with her over the phone and reassured her that the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs would keep them updated on the progress of Hernández's release.

Patrón also mentioned that Claudia Shienbaum, a political candidate, had asked him to explain the case to her. He noted that she appeared visibly moved by the situation.

Patrón highlighted that President Biden's recent proposal to free the hostages included a document signed by several countries. He personally delivered a copy of this document to his President in Ek Balam. He stressed that the United States, along with 16 other countries whose citizens were kidnapped in Gaza on October 7, are jointly calling for the release of the hostages.