Rachel Frankel brought her personal nightmare to the attention of the U.N. Human Rights Council on Tuesday in a direct appeal to the world to do more to help find her son and two other boys kidnapped almost two weeks ago.
Mrs. Frankel said she is living
“every mother’s nightmare” to have her 16-year-old Israeli-American son Naftali kidnapped on his way home from school and receive “nothing, no news, no sign of life.”
She told the 47-nation UNHRC that it has a duty to fulfill and “much more can be done and should be done by so many.”
Every child has the right to return home safely from school, she told the U.N agency.
She described for them the events of June 12, in which her son Naftali, 16, along with Gilad Shaar, 16, and Eyal Yifrah, 19, were abducted from a hitchhiking point in Gush Etzion, as they made their way home from school.
“My son texted me, said he was on his way home, and then he was gone. Every mother’s nightmare is waiting and waiting endlessly for her child to come home,” Rachel Frankel told the UNHRC.
She related personal details about each of the teens. “My son Naftali … is a good student and a good boy, a combination of serious and fun. Eyal loves to play sports and cook. Gilad is an amateur pastry chef,” Frankel said.
She thanked those members of the international community who have spoken out in support of the teens.
“We wish to express our profound gratitude for the waves of prayers and support and positive energy, pouring in from around the world.
“I wish to thank the U.N. Secretary-General [Ban Ki-moon] for condemning the abduction of our boys and expressing his solidarity with the families and calling for their immediate return.
“I thank the International Red Cross for stating clearly that international humanitarian law prohibits the taking of hostages and for demanding the immediate and unconditional release of our boys,” Frankel said.
Nonetheless, she explained, she had traveled to Geneva with the mothers of the two other teens, Bat-Galim Shaar and Iris Yifrach, to urge the international community to do more to bring their sons home.
“Much more can be done and should be done by so many,” Fraenkel said.
“Mr. President, it is wrong to take children, innocent boys and girls and use them as instruments of any struggle. It is cruel. This council is charged with protecting human rights. I wish to ask, doesn’t every child have the right to come home safely from school?
“We just want them back at home, in their beds, we just want to hug them again,” said Frankel.