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Rabbi, it's cold outside

Israeli rabbi takes shelter from snowstorm in Turkish mosque

On work assignment in Istanbul, Israel Elbom — a kashrut supervisor from Bnei Brak — is brought to nearby prayer house by troops after being stranded on the highway for half a day

Rabbi Yisrael Elbom (Courtesy, via Facebook)
Rabbi Yisrael Elbom (Courtesy, via Facebook)

An Israeli rabbi on a work trip to Turkey found himself Tuesday overnight sleeping and even praying at a local mosque after being stranded during a fierce snowstorm.

The storm, dubbed Elpis, caused highways and roads in the country to come to a standstill on Monday after pounding Istanbul — a city of some 16 million people that straddles the European and Asian continents — and accumulating more than 80 centimeters (31 inches) of snow in some areas.

Rabbi Israel Elbom, a kashrut supervisor from Bnei Brak, arrived in Istanbul earlier this week to inspect the operations of a candy factory in the area.

After he was stranded on a highway for nearly 12 hours due to the storm, Turkish troops came and evacuated him to a mosque near Istanbul Airport.

“The people were very nice and helped us. We were inside the heated mosque,” Elbom told ultra-Orthodox news site Behadrei Haredim.

“At 11 a.m. they took us back to our car, and from there we drove back to the hotel. We were on the road for nearly 25 hours.”

Pedestrians walk during a snowfall in Istanbul, Turkey, on Jan. 24, 2022. (Emrah Gurel/AP)

He also said that Turkey’s chief Ashkenazi Rabbi Mandy Hitrik assisted with the evacuations.

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