'Returning terrorists' bodies is immoral'

Family of missing IDF soldier Oron Shaul says returning terrorists' bodies is an 'immoral' concession until Hamas returns soldiers' bodies.

Orly Harari,

Oron Shaul's family
Oron Shaul's family
Eliran Aharon

The family of murdered IDF soldier Oron Shaul on Friday turned to the State Prosecutor requesting permission to oppose a petition submitted to the Supreme Court by two Arab NGOs.

The NGOs, Adalah and Al-Mezan, petitioned to allow Hamas to search for the bodies of Islamic Jihad terrorists who were buried in a tunnel collapse earlier this week.

Adalah is anti-Zionist and run by Arabs in Haifa, while the Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights is based in Gaza.

They have not petitioned Hamas to return the bodies of IDF soldiers Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul, who were killed and their bodies kidnapped by Hamas terrorists during 2014's Operation Protective Edge. They also have not requested that Hamas free two Israeli citizens kidnapped by Hamas and presumed to still be alive.

"My clients request to inform you that they strongly oppose the petitioners' request," the family's lawyer wrote. "It is inconceivable that we will allow the enemy to receive the bodies of its activists, who were busy preparing a tunnel for use in harming Israel, before Oron, Hadar Goldin, and the other Israeli citizens held by Hamas, are returned to Israel."

"The Shaul family's request is not based on a desire for revenge, but on a moral and practical basis. If the enemy wishes to receive the bodies of its activists, who attempted to harm Israel, then it must return to Israel the bodies of Oron and Hadar. This is the enemy's decision to make.

"As long as the enemy stands firm in its refusal to return the bodies of IDF soldiers, or even to give us information about them, returning the bodies of terrorists is an immoral act which harms IDF soldiers and their families.

According to a report on Friday by the Jewish Press, the IDF allowed Hamas and Islamic Jihad to approach 200 meters (0.12 miles) from the border fence in order to continue looking for their dead terror tunnel terrorists. Hamas, meanwhile, declared the search for the terrorists over.

"Agreeing to this request will be a concession, for which we receive nothing in return, and it will harm our bargaining power when we attempt to bring Oron and Hadar back to Israel."

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