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Rachel Fraenkel to appeal to UN Human Rights Council
By TOVAH LAZAROFF
06/24/2014
UN Watch executive-director says world needs to hear story, "heinous act" violates international humanitarian law.
 
Rachel Fraenkel plans to ask the international community to help her son and the two other teens that were kidnapped with him when she testifies on Tuesday before the United Nation Human Rights Council in Geneva.

UN Watch, a non-profit organization, which monitors UN activity, flew her from Israel to Geneva on Monday, so she could address the UNHRC.

“We think the world needs to hear her voice,” UN Watch executive-director Hillel Neuer told The Jerusalem Post on Monday.

“It is a chance for the mother of the kidnapped boys to speak to the world and to ask them to do whatever they can, and to help her,” he said.

“We have not heard anything here at all about the kidnapping,” Neuer said.

Fraenkel’s son Naftali, 16, was abducted from a hitchhiking post in Gush Etzion in the West Bank on June 12, along with Gil- Ad Shaer, 16, and Eyal Yifrah, 19.

“This heinous act violates international humanitarian law, which prohibits targeting civilians and the taking of hostages,” Neuer said.

“We are in awe of Mrs. Fraenkel’s strength of spirit, and are grateful for the opportunity to offer her an international platform to appeal for the safe release of her son and the other two boys,” he said.

The council, which is in the midst of its 26th session, is scheduled to debate Israeli actions against Palestinians on Tuesday morning.

The UNHRC has a standing Agenda Item 7 under which it debates, and often attacks Israeli actions, during each session.

Fraenkel’s trip to Geneva comes after she, her husband and the other parents of the kidnapped teens met with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Friday, and with Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon on Thursday.

Fraenkel, who along with her son, holds dual Israeli-US citizenship, has also met with the US Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro.

Since the kidnapping, the families have been largely sequestered in their homes. The Fraenkel family lives in Nof Ayalon, the Yifrah family in Elad and the Shaer family in the West Bank settlement of Talmon.

On Monday evening, a small prayer service was held at the entry to Elad for the safe return of the teens.
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