100 Jewish Ukrainian orphans arrive in Israel
by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) – Around a hundred Jewish orphans aged 2-18 years old were evacuated from war-torn Ukraine to Israel on Sunday, i24 News reports. The children were taken by bus from their orphanage in northwest Ukraine to Romania, where an Israeli El Al plane picked them up and flew them in.
The children had come from Ukraine’s Alumim Children’s Home and Social Rehabilitation Center for Jewish Children in the town of Zhytomyr, i24 said. The Alumim website describes the home as “a haven for Jewish children from dysfunctional homes including orphans, destitute, abandoned, and abused children of all ages.” However, on March 1 Russian forces began to bomb civilian housing in Zhytomyr, forcing women and children to flee their city (men aged 18-60 are required under current Ukrainian martial law to stay behind).
Greeting the orphans on the tarmac at Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett told reporters: “We are now seeing children immigrating to Israel. It is the most moving thing there is.”
The PM also gave a message to the children: “You are safe now, you have reached a safe shore.”
Prior to the Russian invasion of Ukraine on February 24, there had been some 200,000 people eligible for immigration to Israel under the Israeli Law of Return.
According to this law, anyone who is born Jewish, or has converted to Judaism, or has Jewish ancestry (parent or grandparent), or has a Jewish spouse can ‘make Aliyah’ and obtain Israeli citizenship.
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