While Gilad Shalit
was making efforts to adjust to life at home, new details became available concerning the terms of confinement that Hamas
forced upon him in Gaza.
A relative of the formerly captive soldier told Ynet on Friday that while Shalit wasn't starved, he was not provided with a nutrient-rich diet.
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"There wasn't a shortage of food, they didn't starve Gilad, but the menu was primarily Gazan and not really nutritious," he said. "There were pitas and a lot of hummus."
Out for a morning stroll. Gilad Shalit on Friday (Photo: Avishag Shaar-Yashuv)
The family member said that the poor nutrition, combined with the lack of physical activity and exposure to sunlight and the injuries that he had suffered during his abduction caused him to lose considerable weight.
Since his return home on Tuesday after over five years in captivity, Shalit has been catching up on the new technological innovations that have been developed since his kidnapping, but his family is yet to inform him of the scope of the campaign that aimed to bring him home.
During the preparations for his arrival, Shalit's family rid their home of any signs of the campaign, including posters, stickers and photographs, hiding the objects in boxes to be shown to him in due time.
Shalit spent his first weekend back with his family in his hometown of Mitzpe Hila. Dressed in a white T-shirt and black cap, went out for a stroll in the neighborhood accompanied by his brother Yoel and other family members on Friday.
Curious visitors gathered behind police barricades at the entrance to the family's street in the Upper Galilee, and applauded him as he walked out of the house. Some carried Israeli flags while others came bearing drawings prepared by their children.
Shalit's father, Noam, told reporters Friday morning that "Gilad is feeling well and has been meeting friends in the past few days."
Twelve-year-old Daniel Falah, who came with his family all the way from Tel Aviv, asked to speak with Noam, and told him: "We are very happy that Gilad returned. I am happy along with the entire nation," he said.
On Thursday, Noam Shalit
told reporters that "over all, Gilad is doing well. He is under IDF doctors' care. As you've all seen, he's begun going out of the house a little bit, riding his bicycle, he wants to take walks, he's playing some ping-pong and he's seeing some people, meeting childhood friends.
Asked about Hamas' statement
that Shalit was not tortured in captivity, his father said: "I suggest you take anything Hamas says with a grain of salt. Gilad underwent very difficult things during his captivity. I won't go into that now… His treatment did improve a little bit over time."