Leah Goldin, the mother of slain IDF soldier Lt. Hadar Goldin.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
The mother of Lt. Hadar Goldin, an Israeli soldier whose remains are being held by Hamas in the Gaza Strip, asked the nations of the world to help her son during a special session of the United Nations Security Council Friday.
The informal session, aimed at shedding light on the plight of civilians and the remains of Israeli soldiers held in Gaza, was co-hosted by the United States and Ukraine, members of the Security Council.
Hadar Goldin was killed in August 2014 during Operation Protective Edge, after he was captured by Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip during a US-brokered cease-fire. The Islamist group also holds the remains of St.-Sgt. Oron Shaul
, who was also killed during the operation.
The Goldin family launched a campaign in June of 2016 calling for Israel and the international community to ensure the return of their son’s body.
Leah Goldin slammed the UN Friday for doing nothing to help.
“Our son was not the victim of a war, he was the victim of a ceasefire. A UN-sponsored ceasefire. There has been only painful and brutal silence from the UN,” she said. “Three years after he was taken, our son’s grave remains empty. Not one member of the UN has taken real action to return our sons."
Ukraine’s Ambassador to the UN Volodymyr Yelchenko said the country would do "all it takes" to help ensure the Israeli captives are returned.
"Ukraine does share your pain," he offered, noting the country's yearning for the return of its citizens taken captive by Russian-backed separatist forces during a conflict between the two sides that began in 2014, in which more than 10,000 people have died.
Demanding the UN continue to act until the Israelis held are returned, Leah Goldin said “Hadar was not only our son, but a brother to his siblings. He also left behind a finance after he was taken thirty days before he was supposed to be married.”
"My country acted within UN rules. I want my son back,” she added. The Israeli citizens
being held in Gaza are Avera Mengistu, Hisham al-Sayed and Jumaa Abu Ghanima. All are believed to be suffering from mental illness.
Mengistu is a Jewish Ethiopian immigrant, and Sayed and Abu Ghanima are Beduin.
Video released by Hadar Goldin's family July 9, 2017 (Credit: Hadarsheli.co.il).