Gilad Shalit

UN chief attacks 'alienating' BDS

By Paul Berger, December 29, 2010

The head of the UN's relief agency in Gaza has criticised the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement and called for the release of Gilad Shalit.

UNRWA head John Ging was interviewed in front of a packed audience on Monday during the week-long Limmud conference, held at Warwick University.

Though he reserved particular criticism for Israel's "counterproductive" blockade of Gaza, Mr Ging struck
a conciliatory tone, acknowledging the low opinion of UNRWA in Israel and in the diaspora.


Red Cross: Shalit case top priority

By Jessica Elgot, December 22, 2010

The head of international law at the British Red Cross, Michael Meyer, has said kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit has received more media attention than any other prisoner during his 28 years at the organisation.

Mr Meyer suggested that visiting the 24-year-old soldier, who has been held by Hamas terrorists for more than four years, was complicated by the fact he was not being held by a sovereign state.


Elie Wiesel: free Gilad Shalit, Liu Xiaobo and Sakineh Ashtiani

By Jennifer Lipman, December 21, 2010

Holocaust survivor and human rights advocate Elie Wiesel has launched a campaign to secure the release of three prominent prisoners from Israel, Iran and China.

Mr Wiesel’s Foundation for Humanity has set up a petition demanding the freedom of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo and the Iranian woman sentenced to death by stoning, Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani.

The petition says: "While we and our families celebrate this holiday season let us remember these and so many more political prisoners and their families around the world.”


Rally to mark 1,600 days since Gilad Shalit kidnap

By Jennifer Lipman, November 11, 2010

A rally is to be held in Washington DC today marking 1,600 days since Gilad Shalit was kidnapped by Hamas.

Organisers are hoping to attract at least the same number of people to the humanitarian rally for the soldier, who has been in captivity since June 25 2006.

His parents, Noam and Aviva Shalit, have been camped outside of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s residence in Jerusalem since June, in an attempt to pressure the government into striking a deal for their son’s release.


William Hague in Israel

By Jennifer Lipman, November 3, 2010

William Hague is in Israel on an official government visit. The foreign secretary had a meeting with his Israeli counterpart Avigdor Liberman, after which he signed a film deal between the two countries.

Mr Hague also visited the parents of the kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, and called for his immediate and unconditional release.

Photos: Mati Milstein / British Embassy



The Shalit debate gets animated

By Nathan Jeffay, October 22, 2010

As Israel and Hamas have resumed negotiations in recent days over a deal to free Gilad Shalit, the lobby against a deal has enjoyed unprecedented exposure.

Hamas is demanding that in return for Mr Shalit, an Israeli soldier abducted in 2006, Israel frees 1,000 Palestinian prisoners, including some who have launched attacks on civilians.


Prayer for IDF Druze allowed

By Simon Rocker, September 21, 2010

Orthodox rabbis have been told that there is no problem with including the name of a Druze serviceman among prayers for Israel's missing soldiers.

Rabbi Julian Shindler, director of rabbinic liaison in the Office of the Chief Rabbi, emailed rabbis to say that they can mention Majdy Halabi, who disappeared five years ago.


MDA launch new Shalit campaign

By Robyn Rosen, September 21, 2010

Magen David Adom UK has launched a campaign to demand Red Cross access to kidnapped soldier, Gilad Shalit.

The British branch of the Israeli ambulance charity, which is also part of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), is urging supporters to sign a petition calling on Hamas, under the Third Geneva Convention, to allow the Red Cross to visit Sergeant Shalit.

Almost 11,000 have so far signed the petition, addressed to Tony Blair in his capacity as Quartet representative.


Envoy's first move? Enter the Shalit tent

By Jennifer Lipman, September 21, 2010

The new British Ambassador to Israel and his wife Celia have visited the parents of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit at their protest tent in Jerusalem.

Matthew Gould, who arrived in Israel just after Rosh Hashanah, said that Prime Minister David Cameron had asked him to go and see Noam and Aviva Shalit as soon as he arrived in Israel.


Gap year Brits show solidarity with Shalits

By Jennifer Lipman, September 21, 2010

A group of British teenagers have visited the parents of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

Bnei Akiva gap year participants, who arrived in Israel earlier this month, met Noam and Aviva Shalit at their protest tent in Jerusalem and presented them with flag signed by all members of the group.

The Shalits have been camped outside Prime Minister Benajmin Netanyahu’s residence since July to draw attention to their son’s plight.