NEW YORK (JTA) – Remarks made by a fervently Orthodox anti-Israel group about captured soldier Gilad Shalit are unacceptable, the Orthodox Union said.
The OU on Tuesday slammed comments made by members of the Neturei Karta sect who said that Shalit was not worth saving because he was not religiously observant.
“One of Judaism’s commandments (mitzvot) is redeeming captives (pidyon shvuyim),” the OU said in a news release. “Thus, we are shocked to learn that anyone claiming to observe Jewish law would be so cold hearted and complacent regarding the capture of anyone, let alone a soldier doing his duty to protect and defend innocent life.”
Hamas terrorists captured Shalit in a cross-border raid more than three years ago. The Israeli soldier is being held in the Gaza Strip.
Neturei Karta is vehemently opposed to the State of Israel and some of its members frequently participate in anti-Israel demonstrations.