San Francisco’s Mayor Edwin Lee declared this past August 28 “Gilad Shalit Day” in that city. That was the date of Shalit’s 25th birthday, his sixth in captivity. Now, just a week and a half later, September 7 will be “Gilad Shalit Day” in New York City.
Noam Shalit, Gilad’s father, will be in town to meet with foreign ambassadors in advance of the upcoming U.N. General Assembly, scheduled to open on September 13. The elder Shalit will be reminding those with whom he meets that Hamas’s holding of his son in isolation without visits by the Red Cross or other humanitarian organizations is “a flagrant breach of international law.”
On September 7, New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, together with other City Council members and Jewish leaders, including Malcolm Hoenlein, Executive Vice Chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, will present Noam Shalit with a proclamation declaring that date to be “Gilad Shalit Day” in New York City. Ido Aharoni, Consul General of Israel in New York, will be in attendance at the ceremony, which will take place at the Office of New York City Council Speaker.
Cpl. Gilad Shalit was captured in an unprovoked cross-border raid by Hamas terrorists on June 25, 2006. Two IDF soldiers were killed in the attack, and five were wounded.
The Palestinian Authority will be seeking recognition for an independent Palestinian State during this upcoming session of the U.N. General Assembly. “It would be a little pretentious to say that we are seeking to make Gilad’s release a condition for the recognition, but we shall certainly link the two matters,” Noam Shalit told Ynet in regard to his planned conversations with the foreign ambassadors.