Netanyahu welcomes back IDF aid team from Nepal as major aftershock hits

The returning IDF aid delegation from Nepal. Credit: IDF Spokesperson via Twitter.

( Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu greeted the returning Israel Defense Forces (IDF) aid delegation from Nepal as news of a major aftershock earthquake hit the mountainous South Asian country on Tuesday. 

“I am certain that you are already prepared for the next mission, wherever it may be needed, and it appears, according to the news, that this next mission is already in front of us,” Netanyahu told the delegation, referring to the aftershock.

The IDF aid team treated some 1,600 at its field hospital in Kathmandu, performing 85 surgeries and delivering eight infants.

“I told the Nepali ambassador just a few minutes ago that we are prepared to the best of our abilities to help now too,” Netanyahu said.

On Tuesday, a major 7.3-magnitude earthquake hit Nepal, which is still reeling from a 7.8-magnitude earthquake on April 25. According to Nepali authorities, 42 people have been reported dead and 1,117 have been injured in the latest earthquake. More than 8,000 people died in April’s earthquake. 

Chabad-Lubavitch said that 133 Israelis have again taken shelter at its facility in Nepal.

“Although everyone we know appears to be safe, we are sad to report that there are many more casualties in Nepal again today,” said Rabbi Chezky Lifshitz, co-director of Chabad of Nepal. “There is so much more work that now needs to be done.”

In light of the aftershock, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) called on the Jewish and international communities to renew their efforts to provide aid for Nepal.

“This latest earthquake is a heart wrenching reminder of the urgency for the continued flow of aid to Nepal, a country that has not even begun to heal from the wounds of the first quake two weeks ago,” said Mandie Winston, Director of JDC’s International Development Program. “This new development exacerbates existing challenges on the ground and renews deep fears and widespread trauma. Our hearts once again go out to the people of Nepal at this time of disaster and sorrow.”

Posted on May 12, 2015 .