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Rabbi Attacked in Zhitomir Airlifted to Israel For Treatment

A Chabad rabbi who was found badly beaten on Friday in the central train station in Zhitomir, Ukraine was airlifted to Israel and is in serious but stable condition at the Tel Hashomer Hospital in Ramat Gan.

According to Rabbi Shlomo Wilhelm, director of Chabad-Lubavitch of Zhitomir, Rabbi Mendel Deitsch was found bleeding and unconscious after being robbed and beaten by a group of drunks. He believes the motive was theft, not anti-Semitism, and does not in any way reflect on the community in Ukraine.

After Rabbi Deitsch was rushed to the local hospital, Wilhelm brought in the best doctors from Kiev and Deitsch underwent emergency surgery in Zhitomir. His family in Israel urgently worked with the Israeli government and emergency-services organizations in Jerusalem to arrange his airlift to Israel.

Deitsch is a central organizer of hospitality and programming at the burial site Chabad’s founder Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, in Haditch, Ukraine.

The rabbi’s injuries remain life-threatening. His family asks that people continue to pray for the full recovery of Menachem Mendel Mordechai ben Miriam.

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