Shmuel Buikner, an Israeli doctor in his 30s was killed by a wild elephant in Nepal on Friday.
His body was found in a forest area near Nepal’s Chitwan National Park. According to Nepalese reports, authorities identified him by his Israeli drivers license.
Buikner was interning at Beersheva’s Soroka Medical Center and traveled to Nepal with a delegation of other young Israeli doctors volunteering at local hospitals.
Un médico israelí fue asesinado por un elefante en el Parque Nacional de Nepal. Shmuel Buikner de 30 años era médico del Centro Médico Soroka en Beersheba. @bengurionu #israel @IsraelMFA #katmandu @estadoisrael pic.twitter.com/x94jdx4pMw
— ITON GADOL es Israel y las comunidades judias (@Itongadol) February 25, 2023
The Israeli embassy in Kathmandu is assisting with bringing Buikner back to Israel for burial.
Buikner was from the Israeli coastal town of Or Akiva. He studied medicine in California and completed his medical training at Beersheva’s Ben-Gurion University. He is survived by his parents and two younger brothers.
Nepalese officials believe Buikner entered the park alone and without purchasing a ticket.
According to Nepalese media reports, a 40-year-old Nepalese man was killed in a separate elephant attack the next day in the village of Kamalamai, in southeast Nepal. It wasn’t clear if both attacks were by the same elephant. Residents blocked roads for several hours demanding authorities to provide compensation to the victim’s family and move the elephant to a national park.
The reports added that marauding elephants have been known to enter Nepalese communities, kill people and damage homes and crops.
The reports also noted that in the last six months, eight people were killed by wild animals in the Chitwan National Park — two of which were elephant attacks. The park is known for being a home for rare Bengal tigers and one-horned rhinos.