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March 8, 2022 9:29 am
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Ukrainian Refugees Burst Into Applause Upon Arrival in Israel

avatar by Josh Hasten / JNS.org

Refugees fleeing the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine wait for hours to board a train to Poland, outside the train station in Lviv, Ukraine, March 8, 2022. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

JNS.org – Daria Garn was exhausted. After five grueling days traveling from war-torn Kyiv, Ukraine, through Moldova with her two young sons, she had finally arrived at the Romania International Airport in Iași, where she was waiting to board a flight to Israel. As tears welled, Garn, 29, told JNS she was forced to leave her husband behind as he had been unable to secure the proper paperwork to join her. Following Russia’s deadly invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24, most Ukrainian adult males have been forbidden to leave the country.

Rubbing bloodshot eyes, Garn said that after 10 days of suffering through the bombings, she had decided that it was time to leave. “I’m so tired; I don’t eat, I don’t sleep—it’s like I don’t feel anything. I’m numb,” she said.

Garn and her children were joined at the airport by more than 100 other Jewish refugees who had secured seats on flights to Israel thanks to the United Hatzalah organization.

Monday night counted as Hatzalah’s third rescue mission in the past several days, as staff organized fully subsidized flights from Romania and Moldova.

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Dovie Maisel, vice president of operations for United Hatzalah, told JNS the mission was actually three-fold.

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