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Hundreds Search for Missing IDF Soldier

Hundreds began searching Sunday for 19-year-old Eshel Silberstein, missing since leaving home Saturday to return to his base.
By Chana Ya'ar and Uzi Baruch
First Publish: 3/4/2012, 3:58 PM

Eshel Silberstein
Eshel Silberstein
IDF Spokesperson

Hundreds of police and volunteers fanned out Sunday to search for 19-year-old Eshel Silberstein, missing since leaving home Saturday to return to his base, where he is learning to become an Israel Air Force pilot.

Security forces are focusing their search on the Sharon region. Included among the searchers are both military and police canine units, as well as light helicopters and other aircraft.

A military source told Arutz Sheva that the soldier had been home on personal leave, and that his absence may be due to a personal nature, rather than related to nationalistic causes.

The soldier, who lives in northern Israel was last seen near the “Am HaDerech” mall near Beit Yanai, and from that point, he apparently disappeared. He was carrying a light blue backpack. He is described as slender, and 175 centimeters (about 5 feet, 9 inches) tall, with short-cut dark hair.