Adir Tahar, an IDF soldier, was killed during Hamas' October 7 attacks on Israel.
A militant decapitated him and tried to sell his head for $10,000, his father has claimed.
He said his head was found by Israeli forces in an ice cream store's freezer.
The head of an IDF soldier who was killed during Hamas' October 7 attacks on Israel was found in an ice cream store's freezer, his father said in an interview on Israel's Channel 14 news station.
Adir Tahar, 19, was killed as Hamas militants threw grenades during their assault on Israeli territory, The Times of Israel reported.
He was then beheaded, and his head was taken into the Gaza Strip, his father, David, told Channel 14, per the report.
Following the news, David Tahar told CNN he searched Telegram for signs of his son, watching "every video" he could find.
"I happened to find this video where I could see my son," he said. "I can clearly say that the soldier without a head that you can see in that video is my son."
During an interrogation by Shin Bet, Israel's domestic security service, a Hamas militant also claimed that he had attempted to sell the head for $10,000, David Tahar said.
In an email to Business Insider, the IDF said it had "no information that can confirm the report about the selling of the head."
An IDF spokesperson confirmed all of the details in the story, other than the selling of the head, to CNN.
Tahar said he was later told that his son's head had been placed in a black bag and left in an "ice cream fridge" in Palestine Square, Gaza.
Tahar's head was found by elite Israeli troops supported by tanks, per The Times of Israel.
The Israeli Foreign Ministry also shared the story in a post on X, formerly Twitter.
"Half an hour before I buried my child, his body arrived at Mount Herzl, I opened the coffin when I was alone," he said. "He was unrecognizable. I identified him by dog tags and a DNA test and things he had in his pants."
Tahar told CNN that it was "important the people understand that what happened on 7th October, it can't happen again. Not to Israel, the Israeli people, and not to anyone else.
Israeli officials would not confirm previous claims of beheadings
In the days following the Hamas attacks, unverified reports emerged of other instances of beheadings carried out by the group, including claims that the group had decapitated babies.
The IDF received widespread criticism, alleging it had spread the rumor without evidence.
Responding to the backlash, a spokesperson for the force, Major Nir Dinar, said the IDF would not investigate its claims as it was "disrespectful for the dead" to do so.
No Israeli officials have confirmed the story.
"We cannot confirm any numbers. What happened in Kibbutz Kfar Aza is a massacre in which women, children and toddlers, and elderly were brutally butchered in an ISIS way of action," the IDF said in a statement to Sky News at the time.
President Joe Biden even mentioned the alleged findings in a speech.
"I never really thought that I would see and have confirmed pictures of terrorists beheading children," Biden said.
But the White House later said that the president had not independently verified the claims.
Around 1,200 people were killed in Israel during Hamas' October 7 attacks.
Reports have since emerged of the brutal tactics used by the Palestinian militant group on the day, including horrific stories of widespread sexual violence and mutilation.
Israel responded to the attacks with weeks of deadly airstrikes and a ground invasion of Gaza, leading to the deaths of more than 26,000 Palestinians so far.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has rejected the proposal of a Palestinian state once the conflict concludes, saying that "the war is continuing and it will continue until the end, until we achieve all of its goals."
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