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October 6, 2015 / 23 Tishri, 5776
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Mount Everest’

Body of Missing Israeli Hiker, Or Ashraf, Found in Nepal

Sunday, May 3rd, 2015

The body of missing Israeli hiker 22-year-old Or Ashraf has been found in a “complicated” area on Mount Everest.

Search and rescue workers have been looking for the IDF veteran for more than a week. His friends lost contact after the deadliest earthquake in more than 80 years struck Nepal nine days ago.

Ashraf was last seen alive just before setting out alone on a trail in Langtang, about an hour before the earthquake hit.

His father arrived in the area with some of the veteran’s buddies from the elite IDF Egoz combat unit to help search for him. Some of his belongings were found earlier in the day on Sunday, shortly before rescue workers located the body.

Due to its location, they said it is likely they will retrieve it tomorrow (Monday).

Ashraf’s father had vowed over the weekend that he would not leave Nepal without first locating his son. Israel’s foreign ministry, search and rescue teams and other officials have been using the Kathmandu Chabad House as a base of operations.

The Jewish center operated by Chabad-Lubavitch co-emissaries Rabbi Chezky Lifshitz and his wife Chani has been transformed into a crisis center where some 2,000 meals a day are being served to Nepalese refugees and stranded Israelis as they are being rescued by helicopter teams around the area.

It is at the Kathmandu Chabad House, with its high-tech equipment, that arrangements will likely be made for the retrieval of Ashraf’s body and its return to Israel.

Father, IDF Buddies Search in Nepal for Missing Israeli

Thursday, April 30th, 2015

The father of a young Israeli backpacker has flown to Nepal to search the shattered nation for his missing son, Or Ashraf.

The 22-year-old hiker was last seen in Langtang a week ago just prior to setting out to hike a trail on Mount Everest, hours before the first 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck.

Israel Ambassador to Nepal, Yaron Meir, told IDF Army Radio on Thursday there is no concrete information about the whereabouts of Or Ashraf. “There is some room for concern,” Meir said.

The trekker last told a friend last Thursday that he might attempt to hike one of the trails alone.

The elder Ashraf brought along some of his son’s IDF colleagues from the Egoz combat unit. Ashraf is the sole Israeli who has not made contact after the quake hit the area.

On Thursday, search and rescue teams planned to attempt a helicopter rescue of 20 Israelis located on a remote mountainside in the Himalayas, officials said.

Meanwhile, Rabbi Chezky Lifshitz, co-director of Chabad of Nepal with his wife, Chani, personally joined a helicopter mission to pick up stranded Israeli trekkers. Hours later, 25 were airlifted to Kathmandu; another 20-25 were still waiting for another airlift.

Bad weather has played a role in delaying helicopter rescues in the mountains. One rescue mission intended to deliver food and a satellite phone to stranded Israelis by motorcycle failed after 10 hours due to blocked roads.

While trekkers wait, cold and hungry, others continue to arrive with homeless villagers at the Chabad House in Kathmandu. Volunteers led by Chani Lifshitz are serving up to 2,000 meals a day to Nepalese. The Lifshitz children, meanwhile, are being hosted at the home of Israel President Reuven Rivlin.

Chabad of Nepal has stayed in touch with some 50 Israelis who have been stuck in remote villages with no food, electricity or water with satellite phones. Israelis are stranded in mountain regions like Dhunche and Syrabrubesi; but they’ve been in touch with Lifshitz thanks to the satellite phones they took with them. They were provided by the Chabad House and donated by the family of Nadav Shoham, an Israeli hiker killed last year in a massive, freak blizzard.

More than 5,500 people are known to have died in the earthquake and the devastating 6.7-magnitude aftershock hours later. More than 100 aftershocks followed, and others have continued to rock the region. The quakes affected areas and killed people in areas as far away as Tibet, India and Pakistan.

Even as life ends for so many, a new baby boy weighing 2.1 kilograms came into the world, according to Major (res.) Michal Peres, a midwife and member of the Israeli delegation at the IDF Field Hospital set up in Nepal. The mother was being treated at a local hospital damaged in the quake, but went into labor and required a Caesarean section due to the size of the baby and the physical circumstances of the mother, IDF Major Gil Dar, an obstetrician/gynecologist confirmed. “The feeling is a good one,” he said.

Chabad Co-Emissary in Nepal Hopes for ‘Only Good News’ in Video

Sunday, April 26th, 2015

Chani Lifshitz, co-emissary at the Kathmandu Chabad House, spoke (in Hebrew) Saturday night after the Sabbath in a video message from Nepal, providing details of the growing crisis following two massive earthquakes, the first a 7.9-magnitude temblor that struck during Sabbath morning prayers. The second came as an aftershock, a 6.7-magnitude earthquake that was nearly as bad.

Thus far, nearly 2,500 people have died in the two earthquakes and the avalanches that resulted in Nepal — and as far away as India and China.

“The buildings in Nepal shook, the wind was blowing buildings like paper in the air. Houses are unsafe and the electricity is out,” Chani’s husband, Rabbi Chezki Lifshitz told Lubavitch.com. The Chabad-Lubavitch emissary to the country and his wife have become coordinators of a massive refugee/crisis center. “The sight is horrific —- many are walking around with open wounds,” Lifshitz told the website.

Meanwhile, his wife has maintained updates with the “outside” world and tried to keep up the spirits of Israeli families whose loved ones are still missing.

Visit Jewish.TV for more Jewish videos.

Lifshitz said volunteers at the Chabad House are trying to coordinate “all the Israelis who are here – there are several hundred of them” – including “a few who are injured.”

She said, “We are trying very hard to calm them down, many of them are sitting down in places outside the Chabad House, and inside are those who are injured. But outside it’s pretty safe, and we are still pulling together the lists of who has been found so far and who is still missing. We are trying to work as fast as we can to get to everyone, but even as we speak, the situation is still not entirely stable, and things have yet to settle down.

With a smile she added, “We hope to be able to report to you only good things. Up to this point, we are talking about several people with injuries who are on couches here in the Chabad house

Again, the main work at this point is to coordinate all the names of people who are in Kathmandu and those who are in the mountains, and with God’s help we will get to everyone.”

Dozens of Israelis are camping out in the courtyards around the Chabad House, the emissaries said in a post on their Facebook page. “We are trying to provide everyone with sleeping bags and blankets so they can stay warm at night,” the wrote. “We are asking all Israelis currently in Nepal not to sleep indoors tonight because we are still experiencing aftershocks and the buildings are not safe at this time.”

A special “Israeli Situation Room” has been set up on Facebook for families and friends of Israelis who are in Nepal and may have been caught in the earthquake and are still missing.

Although the page is in Hebrew, one can translate it into English on the Google Chrome browser by using the Translate function under Tools on the pull-down menu on the browser.

Another Facebook page has been set up — also in Hebrew — to provide real-time updates on people looking for and finding those still missing. For those involved in search and rescue efforts or who want to be in touch with those who are, click here.


Israeli Rescue Planes on Way to Nepal as 2nd Quake Hits; 2,000 Dead [video]

Sunday, April 26th, 2015

A second earthquake registering 6.7 on the Richter scale rocked Nepal Sunday morning at the same time Israelis teams were en route to help with the rescue effort and to evacuate Israelis.

The Foreign Ministry hopes that all Israelis with whom contact has been made, including 25 surrogate babies, will be in Israel by tomorrow night.

Ministry officials estimate that Israelis who were injured suffered only light bruises. Approximately 400 Israelis are in Nepal at this time, but the whereabouts of 150 are unknown.

The death toll has passed 2,000 and is expected to rise. Thousands of others were injured in the first quake, measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale.

At least 17 people were killed on Mount Everest.

The earthquake was the worst in 80 years. In 1934,  an  8.1 magnitude earthquake centered near Mount Everest killed more than 10,000 people.

“The reports of the devastation are still coming in and the numbers of people killed, injured and affected by this earthquake continue to rise,” said U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in a statement.

Tremors from the quake were felt in Tibet, where more than a dozen of people were killed as roads and buildings collapsed.

At least 34 people died in tremors felt in India.

British mountain climber Daniel Mazur, stranded on Mt. Everest, tweeted to Indian NDTV, “Aftershock @ 1pm! Horrible here in camp 1. Avalanches on 3 sides. C1 a tiny island. We worry about icefall team below.. Alive?”

A Friendship Forged from 1,384 Ft. Below Sea Level and 29,029 Above

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

Nepal and Israel issued joint commemorative stamps to mark 52 years of friendly relations between the two countries last week. The stamps showcase the highest and lowest points in the world which are found in both countries: Israel’s Dead Sea which is 422 meters below sea level and Nepal’s Mount Everest, at 8,848 meters above sea level.

A stamp signing ceremony was held in Nepal’s capital, Kathmandu with officials from the Nepal government, the Postal Services Department and the Embassy of Israel as well as the Israeli Ambassador to Nepal, Hanan Goder.

Israel-Nepal joint stamp - The Highest and Lowest Places on EarthSimultaneously, the stamp was also issued in Israel at the same time in a festive ceremony held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Present were the Nepalese Ambassador to Israel, Prahlad Kumar Prasai and Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon, who stated that Israel has “a deep appreciation” for Nepal and its people.  “We are happy that our cooperation with Nepal will grow only stronger in the future,” Ayalon declared.

Although not new to Israel, it was the first time that Nepal issued a joint stamp with another country. The stamp depicts both the Nepalese and Israeli flags and includes writing in English, Hebrew, Nepalese and Arabic.

According to an article on NepalNews.com, a leading English-language news site from Nepal, “Israel and Nepal have enjoyed 52 glorious years of diplomatic ties between the two countries since diplomatic relations were established in the 1960s. Since then, both countries have seen the friendship grow and foster.”

Nepal was the first of the Asian countries to establish diplomatic ties with Israel.

The Israeli embassy in Nepal lists a number of programs that Israel has been conducting in the fields of health, culture, education, technology and agriculture in Nepal.

Most recently, Israeli medical students donated their medical books from Soroka University School at Ben Gurion University in the Negev to students at Nepal’s Patan Academy for Health Science through the Israeli embassy in Nepal.

In addition, Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation (Mashav) and the Agricultural Development Bank Ltd. (ADBL) conducted a 10-day session in Kathmandu on agricultural training programs, dairy production, and livestock management for Nepalese farmers in early September.

Every year, approximately 20,000 Israeli backpackers hike in Nepal and the Annapurna mountain range, many of them having finished their army service.  There are three Chabad Houses in Nepal, which hosts thousands of Israeli guests during Jewish holidays.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/a-friendship-forged-from-1384-ft-below-sea-level-and-29029-above/2012/09/12/

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