Head Rabbi of Russia Berl Lazar is to lead the work on the burial ritual of the Jews killed in the Thursday crash of the Tu-154 airliner flying from Tel Aviv to Novosibirsk. Berl Lazar is to arrive in Sochi Sunday morning. Before this Head Rabbi of Sochi Arye Eidelkopf was involved in all the ritual problems, Borukh Gorin, head of Berl Lazar's press service told RIA Novosti. According to Gorin, being informed of the tragedy the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia contacted the Israeli Embassy in Moscow and agreed on cooperation in rendering aid and, first of all, psychological support to the families of the victims who had come from Israel to Novosibirsk. He added they were going to decide on rendering material aid. Except 12 crew members, 66 passengers, mainly Israeli citizens, immigrants from Russia, were on board the airliner crashed over the Black Sea. The national holiday of Sukkot was about to begin and many Jews decided to spend the weekend in Russia.
Several years ago, a prominent Indonesian businessman who now resides in Canada, insisted on meeting me in a back room of one of Jakarta's posh restaurants. An avid reader of mine, he 'had something urgent to tell me', after finding out that our paths were going to be crossing in this destroyed and hopelessly polluted Indonesian capital.