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Statement by United Nations Watch
Delivered by Dr. Leah Goldin, 23 September 2019
UN Human Right Council, 42nd Session
Agenda Item 8: Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action 

My name is Leah Goldin.  I am the mother of Lieutenant Hadar Goldin, a proud soldier in the Israel Defense Forces.

Hadar was 23 years old. A gifted artist, he was engaged to be married to the love of his life, Edna, in summer 2014.

But that August, hours after a UN ceasefire between Hamas and Israel, Hamas terrorists emerged from a tunnel in Gaza, ambushed an IDF unit, and killed Hadar.

For five years, Hamas has been holding our son, and the remains of another soldier, Oron Shaul, refusing to release them, in flagrant violation of the Geneva Conventions and international humanitarian law.

For five years, Hamas has cruelly tormented our family, denying Hadar a proper burial and Red Cross access.

In June, the Security Council adopted Resolution 2474, mandating that all nations share responsibility for the return of the remains of missing persons in armed conflict and for  UN special envoys to take this into account in implementing their mandates.

Last month, I met Secretary-General Guterres, who reiterated he stands behind this resolution, calling to immediately and unconditionally release our son’s remains.

This is not my mission alone – it a mission we all share.

Today, I ask members of this Council: As mothers and fathers, please imagine just for a moment…

What if this was your son?

Thank you.

 

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