The family of St.-Sgt. Oron Shaul, the IDF soldier who was declared killed in action in Gaza after his body went missing, announced on Sunday that it would observe the week-long shiva mourning period.

The significance of the decision is that the family accepts the army’s conclusions, based on forensic evidence, that ruled out any chance Shaul had survived the attack that killed him and six other comrades from the Golani Brigade.

The announcement was made by Racheli Gazit, a relative, outside the family home in Poriya after meeting with the IDF chief rabbi and medical and forensics experts. The family was presented with pathological evidence indicating that Shaul most likely died in the attack.

Shaul, who was unaccounted for after an attack on his armored personnel carrier in Gaza killed six other soldiers last Sunday, was declared dead by the IDF’s chief rabbi on Friday afternoon.

The IDF said Shaul was killed in action on Sunday, July 20, although his body had yet to be recovered. No funeral will take place.

The announcement that Shaul was missing came after Hamas claimed to have kidnapped an Israeli soldier, not saying whether he was alive or dead.

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