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July 18, 2012 11:32 pm

Chabad Rabbis Take on Vital Humanitarian Role in Aftermath of Bulgaria Bombing

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A victim of the attack in Bulgaria. Photo: Screenshot.

In the aftermath of the horrific terror attack in Bugras, Bulgaria earlier today, that targeted Israeli tourists, local Chabad rabbis are playing a pivotal humanitarian role that includes providing food, drink and clothing, translating, responding to concerned family members and ministering the dead and wounded.

“I heard about it as soon as it happened” Rabbi Chaim Tevardovitch of Chabad of Sunny Beach, Bulgaria told The Algemeiner, “we have people that work with everyone as soon as they come to Bulgaria. They come with the buses, and they called me as soon as it happened.”

Tevardovitch says he arrived at the Bugras hospital by 6pm, just over an hour after the bombing which killed 7 took place. He witnessed many of the victims arriving at the hospital bearing an assortment of grievous bodily injuries, and says that three of the most badly injured victims have been moved to Sofia hospital which is more modern.

“Our people are in three places” said Rabbi Yosef Salamon, the main Chabad rabbi in Bulgaria, “at the airport we are giving out food and drinks to the people that are there. At the hospital, we are translating for the doctors, and we have 15 phone lines at the Chabad house where many people are calling.”

“Many people have no clothes because they were in the luggage, so we are trying to provide clothes for them as well” he said. “We have been working with Israeli Ambassador Shaul Kamisa-Raz who has been assisting everyone.”

Salamon told The Algemeiner that ZAKA voluntary emergency response teams from Israel that specialize in disaster victim identification, are awaiting permission from local authorities to retrieve the bodies of the victims from the bus. “We hope that they will be able to take the bodies back to Israel for burial tomorrow” he said, “but we don’t know yet.”

“It is a very difficult situation” he concluded, “we are a place of information for everybody and we are helping in every way that we can.”

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