Simcha Goldin, father of missing IDF soldier.
(photo credit: BEN HARTMAN)
NEW YORK – The parents and brother of Lt. Hadar Goldin, who was killed during Operation Protective Edge in 2014 and whose body remains in Hamas hands in Gaza, will be joining Prime Minister Netanyahu in his trip to New York for the United Nations General Assembly next month.
During their visit, Leah and Simcha Goldin, as well as their son Tzur Goldin, will attend several events, including a meeting with Dani Dayan, the incoming consul general of Israel in New York, and encounters with the Jewish community in the city.
Israel’s ambassador to the UN Danny Danon also said on Sunday that he is working with representatives from various countries and UN officials to utilize the visit for diplomatic meetings in order to push the issue of bringing Hadar Goldin
and Oron Shaul’s bodies back to Israel for burial.
“The main point is that Hadar was killed during a cease-fire that UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and United States Secretary of State John Kerry mediated,” Hadar Goldin’s father told The Jerusalem Post
on Sunday. “We believe they should take responsibility and they are not doing anything. On the contrary, they are sending all kinds of humanitarian aid to Gaza, yet they don’t define the return of Hadar and Oron as a humanitarian issue.”
As part of the visit, a selection of Hadar Goldin’s drawings will be displayed in one of the main exhibition areas of the UN headquarters during the General Assembly, as world leaders converge in the building.
Leah, Simcha and Tzur Goldin will attend the exhibit’s opening in the presence of Netanyahu.
They decided to hold the exhibit, entitled “The Final Peace,” after a curator who visited them during their son’s shiva saw the drawings and was impressed by Hadar’s artwork.
“It is vital that world leaders see firsthand that in addition to an Israeli soldier who was killed and captured during a UN cease-fire, Hadar was a talented human being full of possibility, who had his whole life ahead of him,” his mother said.
Simcha Goldin added that the family is very touched to get the opportunity to speak about their son’s legacy. “It’s very special for us that this is happening in New York. Hadar’s connection to the Jewish world was very special.”
“We are not a regular bereaved family,” he told The Post
. “We are in this mission, we have not begun grieving yet, even if it’s been two years.” He believes it could make a difference if the Jewish community – in New York and in the US in general – would push for the return of his son’s body to Israel.
He and his wife already traveled to New York last February and met with Edmond Mulet, assistant secretary-general for peacekeeping operations at the United Nations to advance the topic.
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