Video: UAE helps two Yemeni-Jewish families reunite after decades of separation

Photo: Wam
Photo: Wam

Abu Dhabi - The families were meeting after more than 15-20 years apart.

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Ismail Sebugwaawo

Published: Mon 11 Jan 2021, 11:23 AM

Last updated: Mon 11 Jan 2021, 12:33 PM

UAE authorities have helped reunite two Jewish Yemeni families with their relatives in Yemen and the UK, whom they had not seen for decades.

The first family of 15 members was reunited in Abu Dhabi on Sunday after UAE authorities facilitated the travel of their family members from both Yemen and London, according to state news agency Wam.

Yitzhak Fayez, 35, said he had not seen his grandparents and uncle since he was a child, after moving to the UK from Yemen. Fayez's grandfather, grandmother and uncle were flown in from Yemen, as he and 11 family members, including five great-grandchildren, flew in from London.

"The last time I saw them was as a child," he said. "They are meeting their great grandchildren today for the first time."

The family were kept apart due to the situation in Yemen and due to financial difficulties. "Today, the UAE made my family's dream come true after we had lost hope on getting reunited, after 21 years of separation."

Fayez further expressed his gratitude for the solidarity and support they have received from the UAE leadership.

Fayez's mother, Losa Fayez, said that the reunion put an end to 21 years of suffering, while Soliman Fayez, the grandfather, and Sham’a Soliman, the grandmother, said she was elated over the family reunion in Abu Dhabi, describing the moment as one that will forever remain etched in her memory.

The second family, the Salem family, were also reunited on Sunday after being parted for 15 years.

Haron Salem, his wife and two children were flown in from Yemen to meet their relative who lives in Abu Dhabi. "Words cannot express how grateful we are to the UAE. We are very happy being here reunited with our family member. The UAE is truly the homeland of love, tolerance and peace," he said.

Health and preventive measures against Covid-19 had been taken by all members of the two Yemeni families for their safety before meeting.

The UAE authorities said they had arranged the reunion of the two Yemeni families in Abu Dhabi in a new humanitarian gesture that embodies the UAE’s firm approach to strengthening human fraternity and upholding the values ​​of peace, brotherhood, solidarity and preserving human dignity.

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