Khaled Mashal
Khaled MashalPhoto: Flash 90

Ten leaders of the US Mulsim community, including the two Muslim congressmen, called on Hamas to return the bodies of missing IDF soldiers Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul.

“In the name of Almighty God the most merciful and compassionate, we appeal to you on the basis of humanity and charity to release the remains of Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul, two Israeli soldiers killed in action, to their families,” read the letter sent to Khaled Mashal, head of the Hamas political wing.

Among the signers of the letter are representatives Keith Ellison of Minnesota and Andre Carson of Indiana - both of the Democrat party; M. Ali Chaudry, the former mayor of Basking Ridge, N.J.; Sayyid Syeed, the director of interfaith alliances at the Islamic Society of North America; and Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, a prominent Muslim leader who directed an unsuccessful and controversial effort to build an Islamic community center near the site of "ground zero," the site of the 9/11 attacks in New York City.

“Both Israelis and Palestinians have felt the pain of war, of losing loved ones and children far too soon,” the letter said. “The Holy Qur’an reminds us that ‘Whoever pardons and makes reconciliation will receive his reward from Allah.’ We ask you to act upon these words and allow the Goldin and Shaul families to bury their loved ones.”

The letter's initiator was Rabbi Marc Schneier, the president of the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding. He made it public on Sunday at the annual Washington conference of the Israeli-American Council (IAC), with Goldin’s parents in attendance.