“During IDF operations in the Gaza Strip, there was intelligence indicating of a number of interactions between several civilians and terror organizations inside the Gaza Strip,” the IDF said in a statement.
“The civilians, among them Mosab Abu Toha, were taken into questioning. After the questioning he was released.”
Earlier Tuesday, Michael Luo, the editor of newyorker.com, said Israeli military officials had informed the magazine’s editor-in-chief that Abu Toha would return to Gaza by the end of the day.
“Over the weekend he had been detained by the IDF (for no evident reason) and was questioned somewhere outside Gaza in southern Israel. The officials said he will be back in Gaza by the end of the day at the latest,” Luo wrote. “We hope Mosab will be able to reunite with his family and we hope to hear from him soon.”
David Remnick told staffers on Monday that the magazine had lost communication with Abu Toha and had been told he’d been arrested amid Israel’s ground invasion.
PEN International quickly demanded more details of his detention.
“PEN International is deeply concerned by news that Mosab Abu Toha, Palestinian writer, poet, and founder of Gaza's first English-language library, has been arrested by the Israeli Defense Force while leaving #Gaza,” it wrote in a post. “We join calls demanding to know his whereabouts and the reasons for his detention.”
Abu Toha is a celebrated poet and scholar who won the American Book Award for a 2022 poetry book. He’s penned poems and essays in the wake of Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack in Israel, sharing dispatches of life in Gaza in the midst of a war.