Mariupol family makes desperate plea for help in message to teen daughter in Israel

Sue Surkes is The Times of Israel's environment reporter.

Vika and Ksiusha Korotkova in Mariupol, Ukraine in September 2021, on the day Ksiusha left for Israel. (Courtesy: Alina Gryadchenko)
Vika and Ksiusha Korotkova in Mariupol, Ukraine in September 2021, on the day Ksiusha left for Israel. (Courtesy: Alina Gryadchenko)

The mother of a 14-year-old girl who came to Israel in September has managed to get a message out saying she and her family are unable to leave their home in the besieged city of Mariupol and their food will run out in two days, making a desperate plea for help.

Mariupol, under siege for 13 days now, has sustained heavy Russian bombing and the population has no electricity, food, water, or communications. Repeated evacuation efforts have been stymied by Russian shelling.

On Tuesday, the Times of Israel reported that Vika Korotkova, who has been sheltering with her husband and younger daughter Sofia in Mariupol, managed to get a message out to her daughter Ksiusha in Jerusalem that the family was still alive.

Ksiusha, 14, came to Israel in September with the Jewish Agency’s Naaleh program for high school students from the former Soviet Union and elsewhere.

That first message was relayed to Christians for Israel, a Netherlands-based organization devoted to bringing Jews to Israel that also operates in Ukraine. It was Christians for Israel that had sponsored Ksiusha’s flight to Israel.

The latest message was delivered directly to Ksiusha and then, via one of her teachers, to Christians for Israel.

Mariupol officials said Friday that 1,582 people had been killed since the siege began.

Ukrainian authorities have warned of a humanitarian catastrophe in the port city.

Agencies contributed to this report.

Never miss breaking news on Israel
Get notifications to stay updated
You're subscribed
Register for free
and continue reading
Registering also lets you comment on articles and helps us improve your experience. It takes just a few seconds.
Already registered? Enter your email to sign in.
Please use the following structure:
Or Continue with
By registering you agree to the terms and conditions. Once registered, you’ll receive our Daily Edition email for free.
Register to continue
Or Continue with
Log in to continue
Sign in or Register
Or Continue with
check your email
Check your email
We sent an email to you at .
It has a link that will sign you in.