PM Bennett and Barel Shmueli's father
PM Bennett and Barel Shmueli's father צילום: יהונתן זינדל/פלאש 90 - כאן חדשות

With the announcement of the passing of Sgt. Barel Hadarya Shmueli in Soroka Hospital, party leaders from both the coalition and the opposition have made statements paying their last respects to him.

President Isaac Herzog said " I am deeply pained by Barel's passing. Over the past week, I have been in continual contact with his mother, and along with the rest of the nation of Israel, we have prayed for his recovery. My wife and I join the family in the immense sorrow of the loss of a beloved son. May his memory be a blessing.

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said "I received news of Barel's passing with the deepest sorrow. There are no words to console his family. Barel lived and died like a soldier, fighting to the very last minute, with all of Israel praying for him. May his soul be brought to eternal life."

Defense Minister Benny Gantz said "Barel was among the finest of Israel's sons, and died defending his homeland and the residents of the South. Just a few days ago I stood at his bedside and prayed for his recovery. In the name of the entire Defense Ministry, I extend my condolences to the family, and hope they know no more pain."

Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said "I send my condolences to Barel's family. He had the spirit of a true soldier; I can only hope that his accomplishments grant you some peace. May his memory be a blessing."

Justice Minister Gideon Sa'ar said "My heart aches to hear of Barel's passing. All of Israel sits in pain and mourning. My condolences to his family."

Communications Minister Yoaz Hendel said "Barel made his way into all of our hearts and united the nation in prayer. We have paid a steep price to protect our land. As a Cabinet minister and reserve commander, I will do everything I can to make sure that we deserve it."

Coalition chairwoman Idit Silman said "Nothing I can say will be enough. May God comfort the family."

Opposition leader Netanyahu said "Barel fought terror from Gaza with great strength and determination. I and my wife prayed for a miracle along with the rest of the nation, and will never forget either him or his courage. May his memory be a blessing."

Religious Zionism leader Bezalel Smotrich said "I bow my head in Barel's memory. May God avenge his death, and may the prayers of myriads of Jews accompany him, his family, and the entire nation. May we all live to see better days."

Shas leader Aryeh Deri said "I join the family in mourning Barel, who will be remembered as a hero who gave his life for the people and land of Israel. May his memory be a blessing."

National Police Commissioner Yaakov Shabtai said "Barel fought terror for two years and five months, and fought for his life for nine days. He always chose to be at the very front and put his life in danger more than once for the security of the state of Israel. His legacy will inspire generations of future officers to follow in his footsteps as part of the Israel Police's uncompromising war against terror."

Deputy Commissioner Amir Cohen said "Barel was a soldier and a gentleman, the very salt of the earth. Every operation he carried out was performed professionally and determinedly to increase the security of Israel's citizens. He was both a leader and a friend of his fellow soldiers, always giving the best advice and encouraging those around him. Barel, I salute you."

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