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Latest Wave of Ethiopian Aliyah Becoming Urgent!

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Posted on: 
27 Nov 2020
Latest Wave of Ethiopian Aliyah Becoming Urgent!

The latest reports out of Ethiopia continue to raise concerns for the safety of the Ethiopian Jewish community in the northern province of Amhara, where an armed insurrection in neighboring Tigray is threatening to spread and endanger over 6,000 Jews still stuck in transit camps in Gondar awaiting their chance to make Aliyah to Israel. Thankfully, two Jewish Agency flights with 500 Ethiopian immigrants will land next Thursday, 3 December, and the ICEJ will be one of the main sponsors of this airlift operation. But for the remaining Jews back in Ethiopia, time may be running short.

Israel’s government decided five years ago to bring home the last remnant of some 10,000 Ethiopian Jews living in transit camps in Gondar and Addis Ababa. The Christian Embassy has sponsored Aliyah to Israel for over 2,200 Ethiopian Jews since then, but the immigration process has been slow and the challenges to the well-being of those left behind are mounting.

The region has been suffering under a prolonged drought, while a massive plague of locust also has hit East Africa this year. As a result, food supplies are running short and prices are spiraling upward. Many Jews in the transit camps are malnourished, especially children. And Ethiopia is now weathering a serious wave of coronavirus. Add to this the armed rebellion which erupted two weeks ago in the breakaway province of Tigray, just 45 miles from the Gondar transit camps, and the situation has become quite worrisome, particularly for their relatives in Israel.

Over recent days, nine Israeli workers and volunteers had to be rescued from the fighting in Tigray. Even more concerning are reports of a massacre of 600 non-Tigrayan villagers who were slaughtered by child soldiers while rebel troops stood by. This has heightened fears of tribal warfare throughout the region, with the Jewish community having little means of protection.

This comes after news that a member of the Gondar Jewish community was killed in a cross-border clash last week, while several rebel rockets also hit the Gondar airport – which would need to be used in case an emergency airlift is necessary to bring the Jews there out of danger.

Before the uprising, plans were already underway for Israel to bring the next group of 2,000 Ethiopian Jews home within the next few months. The International Christian Embassy Jerusalem committed to assist with this initiative by helping to fund their Aliyah process, beginning with next week’s two planeloads. But the need appears to be more urgent each day, and we are asking you to help us be ready for accelerated measures.

Please consider making a generous donation to help more Ethiopian Jews reach safety and re-join their families in Israel. May the Lord bless you richly as you donate towards this very urgent and worthy cause!

Give towards our Ethiopian Aliyah efforts at: int.icej.org/civicrm

Please, watch an Israeli TV report on the current situation in Ethiopia.

 

 

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