Chief of Staff welcomes SFC Gilad Shalit

Lt. Gen. Gantz: “This operational and ethical mission is complete”

Date: 18/10/2011, 2:31 PM     Author: IDF (Zahal) Website

The Chief of the General Staff, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz addressed the return of the IDF (Zahal) soldier, SFC Gilad Shalit while he was meeting with his family for the first time in five years on Tuesday (October 18).

“Today we conclude a chapter that started on June 25, 2006 when an IDF (Zahal) tank was attacked with Gilad Shalit, Lt. Chanan Barak and Staff Sgt. Pavel Slotzker who were killed, and Staff Sgt. Roee,” said Lt. Gen. Gantz. “With the Israeli government’s decision to return SFC Gilad Shalit, this operational and ethical mission is complete after five years, for Israel, for the IDF (Zahal), for the Shalit family and SFC Gilad Shalit himslef.”

“The IDF (Zahal) welcomes SFC Shalit today. Gilad returned to his country and his family and will now commence the personal journey to return to a normal and appropriate life. The IDF (Zahal) will continue to accompany Gilad and his family as needed and wishes them best of luck with their renewed path,” added the Chief of Staff.

According to Lt. Gen. Gantz, “security challenges will continue to persist, as they have before the execution of SFC Gilad Shalit’s return agreement. The IDF (Zahal) embraces the bereaved families who lost loved ones in terrorist attacks and will continue to relentlessly defend the State of Israel and its citizens.”