ROME (JTA) — Kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was made an honorary citizen of the Italian capital.
Rome Mayor Gianni Alemanno conferred the honor at a ceremony Wednesday night, presenting a parchment declaration to Shalit’s father, Noam.
Alemanno said that making Shalit an honorary citizen was "a gesture of high symbolic value, which with Roma chooses to salute the values of life, of solidarity and of respect for the human rights." He added, "You cannot win using violence, kidnapping and ransom."
Alemanno also called for Shalit’s release. Hamas captured Shalit three years ago during a cross-border raid.
During their visit to Rome, Noam Shalit and his wife met with senior political figures, including the Chamber of Deputies President Gianfranco Fini, who said Hamas "did not respect the Geneva Conventions and it is not by chance that it is on the blacklist of terrorist organizations."