Israeli Man Stabbed to Death in Uman, Ukraine

Published: September 26th 2010
in News » World

Jews on a pilgrimage to Rabbi Nachman's grave during Rosh Hashanah.
Pic: wikimedia commons

An Israeli man on a pilgrimage to the Ukrainian town of Uman was killed by a group of intoxicated local men, area police stated on Sunday.


The Associated Press quoted police spokeswoman Natalya Taran who said that a Hasidic Jewish pilgrim was stabbed to death during a fight with local residents.


This year, 30,000 Hasidim travelled to Uman to celebrate Rosh Hashanah near Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav’s grave. This new year marks the 200th anniversary of the death of the celebrated rabbi who founded the Breslov Hasidic movement.


In an interview with Israel Army Radio, Rabbi Moshe Reuven Asman said that drunken locals stabbed the 19-year old pilgrim and also wounded his brother during a fight.


Arutz Sheva is reporting that the 19-year old is Shmuel Tuvol and the man’s brother is Refoel Tuvol. They were both in Uman to pray at the grave of Rabbi Nachman.


The brothers were staying at their family home near the tomb. The fight started when three Ukrainians threw rocks at Shmuel Tuvol’s car. He yelled at his brother for help, but then had rocks thrown at him and was stabbed in the chest.


The Haredi website Chaderei Hareidim reported that after he was stabbed he said to his brother, “Refael, they stabbed me in the heart!”


His brother ran over to help him but was also attacked by the mob who severely injured him with a shovel. He, too, was almost stabbed. However, he was able to knock the knife away and narrowly escape.


The brothers were rushed to the hospital where Shmuel was declared deceased. Several of the mob also appeared there asking for medical attention for injuries suffered during the fight, but doctors had been briefed about what had occurred and police were called in to make arrests.


Every year, thousands of Breslov Hassidim travel to Rabbi Nachman’s tomb for an annual pilgrimage. Rabbi Nachman was the great-grandson of the founder of the Hasidic movement.


Last week, three Hasidic Jews were arrested and 10 others deported by Ukraine for what the government said were violations of public order. During the pilgrimage, police reported that two Uman residents said they were attacked after admonishing the pilgrims for being noisy.

Related articles: (Ukraine, Uman, Rabbi Nachman, Hasidic, Hasidism)
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