Jews Embrace After Water Dam Bursts in Ural Mountains

The Jewish community in the Russian city of Orenburg held an emergency meeting after melting ice and snow caused the water levels of the Ural River to rise dangerously high and caused the dam to burst.

As the melting ice and snow caused the water levels of the Ural River to rise dangerously high, a state of emergency was declared on Friday throughout the region. The large amounts of water caused the dam to burst and many villages were flooded.

Russia’s Ministry of Emergency Situations reported that by yesterday about 3,000 homes in the area were already flooded and thousands of residents were evacuated from the nearby Orsk region.

The city of Orenburg is located in the south of the Ural Mountains, on the Ural River, near the mouth of the Skamarka River which overflowed its banks and flooded the streets of the city which is populated by over half a million inhabitants.

An emergency meeting was held in the city’s main synagogue, where the Cheif Rabbi and Chabad emissary, Rabbi Goel Meyers, conveyed words of encouragement and presented halachic answers to the community members as were sent to him by Russia’s Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar in light of the unusual circumstances.

Additionally, several steps were agreed upon to ensure that all buildings are appropriately sealed and that immediate assistance will be provided to every Jewish family in the city.

In parallel, Passover preparations continue, with matza and wine being distributed so that as many Jews as possible can celebrate the Seder in true freedom.


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