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Rabbi Menachem Mendel Deitsch, a Chabad shaliach who operated in France and Israel, tragically died in Jerusalem over Shabbat, succumbing to incidents he sustained in an antisemitic attack in Ukraine last year.

He was attacked in the City of Zhitomir, at the train station, having spent Rosh Hashana in Haditch, and was found badly injured the next morning. Four suspects have been arrested in connection with the attack, which is now thought to have been antisemitic in motive.

Rabbi Deitsch was involved in maintaining the grave site of the founder of the Chabad movement, Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, in Haditch and was also involved with promoting Judaism in the former Soviet Union.

He was given emergency treatment in Ukraine, and flown to Israel for further treatment for head trauma. He had been in a coma since the attack.

Chabad write:

“He is survived by his wife, Shterna Sara, and their children, Menouha Friedland, Aubervilliers, France; Rabbi Shnieur Zalman Deitsch, Minsk, Russia; Mrs. Chana Appelbaum, Migdal HaEmek, Israel; R’ Yisroel Deitsch, Jerusalem; R’ Levi Yitzchok Deitsch, Jerusalem, Yehudis Fradkin, Rechovot, Israel; R’ Yosef Eliyahu Deitsch, Krayot, Israel; and ShlomoYehuda, Shmuel, Yocheved, and Dovber.

He is also survived by his brothers: Rabbi Chaim Sholom Deitsch; Rabbi Shneur Zalman Deitsch, and Rabbi Moshe Deitsch.

The funeral will take place Sunday, leaving Shamgar funeral home in Jerusalem at 2:30 p.m.”

That a Rabbi could be beaten to the point of death in twenty-first century Europe is unforgivable and outrageous, and no civilised society can tolerate such actions. We will report on any legal proceedings if they arise.

We wish all his family, and all those dear to him, a long life.


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