The parents of the three kidnapped Israeli teenagers met at one of their homes for the first time since the beginning of the crisis last Thursday.
The parents of kidnapped Israeli teenagers Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Shaar, and Naftali Frankel met for the first time Tuesday morning at the Frankel home in Nof Ayalon, near the central Israeli city of Modi’in.
“We are making a great effort to bring your sons home,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the meeting.
Several dignitaries were also present, although the families spent some time alone with each other, vowing to support each other and to stay strong.
Since Friday, when news of the abductions on Thursday became public, politicians, religious leaders and lay people have been visiting the families, offering words of encouragement. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other government officials have assured them that the government and the IDF are doing everything possible to find the boys and bring them home safely. Tens of thousands of people have been gathering for prayer services across the country.
Dignitaries Inspired by Courage of Families
On Monday, according to a Tazpit News Agency report, a delegation of 40 French Members of Parliament that arrived in Israel to commemorate 65 years of diplomatic ties between France and Israel and which includes members of the Senate, national committee, mayors and former ministers – in fact, the largest parliamentary group ever to visit Israel – visited the families of the abducted boys.
Meyer Habib, an Orthodox Jewish member of France’s National Assembly and head of the delegation, told Tazpit that the visitors expressed sorrow over the “poor and insufficient coverage this tragic event has received in the French media.”
According to Habib, the visits with the families of the kidnapped Israeli teenagers left a profound impression on the delegation, Tazpit reports.
“Our visit was held under a very dark cloud of a tremendously dramatic event which hasn’t received enough coverage in France,” Habib said. “When you come face to face with such courageous people, it is certainly impossible to remain indifferent.”
Representatives of all three families had issued statements thanking the public for their support and acknowledging the efforts of the security services to rescue their children. Racheli Frankel, mother of Naftali, who is also an American citizen, was the first to do so; on Sunday, she stated to Israel’s Channel 2:
“Naftali, your dad and mom and siblings love you endlessly, and you should know that the People of Israel are turning the world upside down to bring you home. People from all over the country are gathering to pray for your return. We love you and will celebrate your return. We are optimistic that God will see the combined effort of solidarity and prayer, and embrace the boys.”
Author: Atara Beck
Staff Writer/Editor, United with Israel