September 16, 2009
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Jewish Agency for Israel lay leaders and community representatives will meet with the Red Cross to discuss Gilad Shalit.
At the meeting Tuesday in Washington with Gail McGovern, CEO of the American Red Cross, and Mary Werntz, the head of delegation of the International Committee of the Red Cross, the Jewish leaders will deliver hundreds of postcards and thousands of names collected on an electronic petition asking the Red Cross to continue demanding that Shalit receive the full rights of an abducted soldier under international law.
The meeting culminates several events across the United States held in honor of Shalit's 23rd birthday. The Israeli soldier was taken from Gaza by Hamas in a cross-border raid more than three years ago.
“It is important for everyone to know that the American Jewish community and all Americans of conscience deplore the situation in which the Red Cross has been denied contact or verification of condition of an abducted soldier,” said Carole Solomon, chair of the Jewish Agency North American Council. “This was a grass-roots initiative in communities from Tulsa to Tucson, Phoenix to Minneapolis. These are the voices of Americans all across the country.”