President Rivlin pays condolence visits to the families of First Sgt. Hail Stawi and First Sgt. Kamil Shanan
(Communicated by the President’s Spokesperson)
President Rivlin: “The bond between us and our Druze brothers is a covenant of life, of equality, of shared lives, and of a shared struggle for this land.”
President Reuven Rivlin today (Tuesday), paid condolence visits to the families of First Sgt. Hail Stawi in the northern Israeli town of Maghar and, & First Sgt. Kamil Shanan in the nearby town of Hurfeish, who were killed in the terror attack on Temple Mount on Friday.
At the beginning of his visit at the Shanan family, Kamil’s father, former Member of Knesset Shachiv Shanan, told the President of his support for the security services and his appreciation for the many commanders who had come to pay their condolences. “May they always have the upper hand, for their success is the true defense of our lives”, he said.
“The criminal murderers who murdered my son, will not slay our shared existence with the Israeli people,” said Shachiv, and told of the President of the many people who had come from across the country and added, “I have discovered the Jewish people, who I already loved, and now I truly love. I want to thank this wonderful people who live in this land. Mr. President, in coming today, you have taken half of my pain, and the people took the other half. When you come here, my sacrifice is not in vain”. He told of how he had asked of his son, who was always smiling, to safeguard the dignity of the people with whom he met in his role, regardless of any differences. He added, “Now the will, the legacy of my son and of Hail, is that we will forever continue in our shared existence, Arabs and Jews, Muslims, Christians, Circassians, all of us children of this land.” He concluded by saying, “This is the best country in which to be Jewish, but it is also the best place to be Druze, and we are proud to be citizens of this country.”
The President expressed his deep sorrow and told Shachiv, “Your people and my people are the same people, our people. We need to meet each other with the desire to live together, with a will to connect. The bond between us and our Druze brothers is a covenant of life, of equality, of shared lives, and of a shared struggle for this land”. The President went on to say, “Your son protected us from extremists, he protected us from those who thing that there could be a religious fundamentalist war. We will not allow extremism, and we will do all needed to prevent it. We came here to comfort you, in order to show gratitude for a hero, a defender of the walls of Jerusalem, a defender of the State of Israel, in the face of evil and extremism. We hope and pray that the bond that exists between the Druze and the State of Israel will be a bond of life, not a bond of blood.”
Rafik Halabi, head of the Daliat al-Carmel Regional Council, said, “They are not the first victims from the Druze community, but they are on all of our minds. One who does not condemn terror is a partner to is, all leaders must condemn terror. This is destructive fanaticism. They tear up every good part of this country. Restraint is power, tolerance is power. We must not be drawn into incitement. We must preserve the power of humanity, not to respond or answer ever word of hatred and incitement. Coexistence is the power of the State.”
Later, the President visited the family of First Sgt. Hail Stawi in the nearby town of Hurfeish. The President embraced the family and said, “Your son was so dear to the country. He was a defender of the country, of all of us. Your pain is the pain of all the people.”
Afif, Kamil’s father, thanked the President for his visit, and said with sorrow, “We hope this will be the last victim”. The President said to Erin, Hail’s widow, “We are crying together with you. I understand your pain, your tears, the pain of your baby son who will grow up without a father.”