"We are strong. We will not lose hope," Nazmi Halabi, father of missing IDF soldier Majdi Halaby, told Ynet Tuesday – the sixth anniversary of his son's disappearance.
Majdi Halaby, an Israeli Druze soldier from the northern Israeli town of Daliyat al-Karmel, went missing on May 24, 2005. The 19-year-old soldier was last seen trying to hitchhike from his hometown to his Ordnance Corps base near Tirat Ha'Carmel.
An extensive search involving hundreds of volunteers ensued, but no trace of him was ever found. Halabi was officially declared as missing in action (MIA) on June 6, 2005.
Despite time passed, the military's missing persons unit and the police still have no leads in the case. "The State should be doing much more," his father said.
Nazmi Halabi said the family draws its strength from the fact that the case remains active: "What's important to me is that this case hasn’t been shelved. They have a situation assessment every six weeks with everyone involved – the police, the military and the Shin Bet… Still that's not enough. The State can and should do more than it is doing."
Various IDF and police task forces have investigated Halabi's disappearance over the years; and the Born to Freedom Foundation has a standing $10 million reward for
any information leading to his whereabouts.
Unfortunately, to date no progress has been made.
The Halaby family is known in military ranks: Nazmi volunteers with wounded and lonely soldiers, and his three other sons are in active service – his eldest is an officer and his youngest, twins, are in the midst of their mandatory service.