Israeli Disaster Identification Team Heads Home

March 9, 2011 by J-Wire Staff
Read on for article

The eight members of the Israeli Disaster Identification unit flown out to assist local authorities in the difficult work of confirming the identity of those who lost their lives in the Christchurch earthquake, left New Zealand today to return to Israel.


Mtan Vilnai (red tie) and Ambassador Tzur 3rd from rt with DVI team

The work of the DVI unit has received official praise. The team arrived last Monday, February 28 and left early today, March 9.

Speaking in Christchurch, Israel’s Ambassador to New Zealand, Shemi Tzur, paid tribute to the work of the eight-person police unit whose members worked alongside their counterparts from a number of nations at the Burnham Military Camp.

Ambassador Tzur visited the camp yesterday, joining local authorities in bidding a warm farewell to the Israeli team. Israel’s Minister for Civil Defence Matan Vilnai joned the Ambassador.

“Both myself and the unit have nothing but praise for the level of professionalism and for the cooperation by all staff, both local and international” Ambassador Tzur said.

“I wish to once again express our deepest sympathies and condolences to the government and people of New Zealand for the tragic loss of life and heavy damage sustained to the country’s beautiful Garden City.”

The Ambassador further expressed his gratitude to all those involved in the identification and repatriation of the three young Israelis whose lives have been lost.

“While we certainly would not wish for the recurrence of this type of horrific situation, the Israeli Government always remains ready to offer what it can to New Zealand in any such event”.

Ambassador Tzur told J-Wire: “We had already identified the three young Israelis who died in the earthquake before the DVI unit arrived. We had fingerprint records which facilitated the process. But what a terrible experience this has been. I have witnessed many horrific incidents in my life, but nothing matches the horrors that we witnessed in Christchurch. I am still shaking my head to think that four young backpackers are in a car which is struck by a boulder and that three walk away without a scratch and the fourth one is killed. I feel for all involved and especially the families of the victims.”




One Response to “Israeli Disaster Identification Team Heads Home”
  1. Jim Baltaxe says:

    Hi Friends

    As another volunteer worker who just returned from Christchurch, I want to express my appreciation and awe for the work of the Israeli DVI team, and their counterparts from the NZ armed forces and those of all other countries present. DVI is probably the hardest and most unpleasant of all the jobs in the event.

    I flew back up from Christchurch with a member of the Kiwi DVI team who was full of praise for the Israelis. They showed up with specialist equipment and advanced skills which, he said, made the entire job much faster and more reliable than it would otherwise have been.

    Yasha Koach

Speak Your Mind

Comments received without a full name will not be considered
Email addresses are NEVER published! All comments are moderated. J-Wire will publish considered comments by people who provide a real name and email address. Comments that are abusive, rude, defamatory or which contain offensive language will not be published

Got something to say about this?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.