Gilad Shalit supporters get message out nationally
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Mellow yellow: Israeli embassy staff, including Ambassador Ron Prosor, get their T-shirts out at the start of Gilad Shalit National Awareness Fortnight
A campaign aimed at raising awareness of Gilad Shalit's plight has been launched around the country.
Advertising vans, emblazoned with Sergeant Shalit's photograph and story, will drive around prominent locations in London and Manchester for the next fortnight.
The Israeli Embassy, working with 10 Jewish community organisations, hopes that the initiative will inform the British public about the Israeli soldier's treatment at the hands of Hamas.
The 24-year-old has been held for more than four years and denied all visits, including from the Red Cross, in breach of international humanitarian law.
Donna Karan: hopes to host Shalit parents
Leaflets will be distributed by Embassy staff in London and Manchester. Ambassador Ron Prosor and Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks promoted the campaign at the Embassy, in west London, yesterday.
On February 24, solidarity vigils will be held in London, Leeds, Birmingham and Manchester.
Supporters will release Chinese lanterns representing the number of days Sgt Shalit has been held.
Students will also back the campaign on their campuses.
FZY year course participants in Israel are planning to protest outside government buildings in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv next month.
Around 200 are expected to take part in a "fall-in" by dropping to the ground. They hope to encourage leaders to put more pressure on Hamas to release Sgt Shalit . The protest will be led by 18-year-old Gilad Amzaleg from Glasgow.
Fashion designer Donna Karan has invited Sgt Shalit's parents to a peace conference she is hosting in London next month. She wrote to them after a colleague saw one of the advertising vans in Covent Garden earlier this week.