A 20-year-old Indian-origin Israeli soldier, Staff Sgt. Halel Solomon, lost his life while fighting in Gaza. Halel was a resident of the southern Israeli town of Dimona, known for its association with Israel’s nuclear reactor and a population of Jews from India.
Dimona’s Mayor, Benny Bitton, expressed his condolences in a Facebook post, saying, “It is with great sorrow and grief that we announce the death of a son of Dimona, Halel Solomon, in the battle in Gaza.” He added, “Halel aspired to do a meaningful service and enlisted in the Givati Brigade. Halel was a devoted son and had respect for his parents always in his eyes. Possessing immense good qualities, he believed in endless giving, modesty, and humility. The whole city of Dimona is grieving his passing.”
Indian community members told PTI he was “a young man with pleasant manners and a very bright future ahead.”
At least, eleven Israeli soldiers have lost their lives in the ongoing Gaza, according to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who pledged to persevere until victory in what he termed a “difficult war” with “painful losses.”
“We are in a difficult war. This will be a long war. We have so many important achievements but also painful losses,” Netanyahu said.
“We know that every soldier of ours is an entire world. The entire people of Israel embrace you, the families, from the depth of our hearts. We are all with you during your heavy sorrow. Our soldiers have fallen in the most just of wars, the war for our home,” the Israeli Prime Minister said.
The UN Humanitarian Office (OCHA) reported that 8,309 Palestinians, including 3,747 children and 2,062 women, have been killed in Gaza since the beginning of the Israel-Hamas conflict.
“In Gaza, women, children and men are being starved, traumatized and bombed to death. They have lost all faith in humanity and all hope of a future. Their despair is palpable,” Martin Griffiths, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, said in a statement.