Hamas published Saturday images conjuring up abducted IDF soldier Gilad Shalit in captivity, to mark five years since his kidnapping.
The pictures show a Palestinian playing Shalit's role sitting at his "cell" with photos of Israeli navigator Ron Arad, who has been missing in action for some 25 years, hanging on the walls.
Another image shows Shalit as an old man.
The cell's walls features messages such as "I'm being abandoned," "two governments and I'm still a prisoner," "rescue me at any price," "I miss mom, and "My fate is the same as Ron Arad's."
Meanwhile, Hamas' military wing, Izz al-Din al-Qassam, posted on its website a new video presenting torture that Palestinian prisoners allegedly undergo in Israeli jails.
While the five-year anniversary of Shalit's abduction was not officially marked in Israel, many Israelis refused to forget the occasion. Some 600 people gathered near the Kerem Shalom crossing, a few kilometers from the Shalit kidnapping site, urging the government to secure a prisoner swap for the captive.
A letter written by Shalit's grandfather, Zvi, was read at the rally and criticized Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
"It's clear to us that the prime minister, through his refusal to compromise, gambles on and endangers the life of my grandson every day," the letter read.
Elsewhere, hundreds of Israelis heeded Noam and Aviva Shalit's call and arrived at the family's protest tent opposite the Prime Minister's home in Jerusalem, where they intermittently blocked the road. Protestors carried signs including messages such as: "Bibi, I'm sorry for being alive."
Saturday afternoon, French ambassador to Israel Christophe Bigot arrived at the tent with a personal letter from President Nicolas Sarkozy, addressing Shalit directly.
French envoy with Shalits (Photo: Gil Yohanan)
"Dear Gilad, I'd like to address you directly today, because I cannot accept the isolation that your prison guards have been forcing upon you for five years now, while violating every norm of international law and of the most basic codes of humane conduct. Despite your unbearable imprisonment, you are holding on bravely. You fear for your life. Your youth go by in terrible solitude. It's an awful situation. Nothing can justify it," the letter read.
"I implore those who are imprisoning you to put an end to the greatly unjust situation you are facing," Sarkozy added. "They must start by granting the Red Cross immediate permission to meet you; yet beyond everything else, they must give you back your freedom, which you've been deprived of for more than 1,800 days. The time has come for those responsible for holding you in captivity to take a decision and put an end to your indefinite incarceration, your unbearable and outrageous imprisonment."
The French president repeated the pledge he made in a meeting with Gilad's father, Noam, in Paris recently: "France will not abandon you and will not stop acting, along with other elements, including in the Arab world, so that this unjust suffering will draw to an end."