Mothers of 3 murdered teens to light Independence Day torch

Culture Minister invites mothers of three Israeli teens who were kidnapped, murdered by Hamas to light Independence Day torch

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Parents of the three slain Israeli  youths
Parents of the three slain Israeli youths
Gershon Elison/Flash90

The mothers of three Israeli youths who were kidnapped and murdered by Palestinian Arab terrorists in 2014 will take part in this year’s torch lighting ceremony marking Israel’s Independence Day.

Rachelle Fraenkel, the mother of Naftali Fraenkel; Iris Yifrach, mother of Eyal Yifrach; and Bat Galim Sha’ar, the mother of Gilad Sha’ar have been invited by Israeli Culture Minister Miri Regev (Likud) to be among the honored guests lighting torches as part of the state’s main Independence Day ceremony this year.

The three received the joint invitation in recognition of their work for a number of social causes after the murder of their sons; including aiding support groups for the bereaved victims of terrorism.

All three of the bereaved mothers will light a single torch – an honor usually extended only to a single guest. A special ministerial committee for state events approved a measure permitting the invitation to be extended to all three, allowing them to receive a joint invitation.

On June 12th, 2014, the three Israeli teenagers were kidnapped by a cell of Hamas terrorists operating out of Hevron. The three teens were kidnapped at popular hitch-hiking spots in Gush Etzion, south of Jerusalem.

Eighteen days later, the teens’ remains were found just north of Hevron.

The killings touched off a major escalation between Israel and the Hamas terror organization, culminating in the August 2014 conflict between Israel and Gaza known as Operation Protective Edge.