Rescue teams find body of second Israeli missing in Peru

Body of first victim killed in rafting accident being flown to Israel; local officials investigating possible negligence

Rafting in Peru (photo credit: CC BY-SA/jon.roberts)
Rafting in Peru (photo credit: CC BY-SA/jon.roberts)

The body of the second Israeli who went missing on a rafting trip in Peru was found Saturday by search and rescue teams, the Israeli Foreign Ministry said.

The unidentified Israeli’s remains were found in the Apurimac River and were to be transported to Cuzco for identification. The Israeli consul in Peru and Foreign Ministry officials will attend to shipping the remains back to Israel for burial.

The body found Saturday was one of two Israeli tourists who went missing on the rafting trip last week. On Thursday, the body of a 22-year-old woman from Ramat Hasharon was found, three days after the two fell overboard. Her remains were expected to be flown to Israel Saturday night.

Neither of the two has been named in the Hebrew press.

An Israeli search team was dispatched Wednesday to help search for the two, who disappeared when their raft overturned in southern Peru Monday afternoon. The raft bore eight Israelis and a guide. Six of the Israelis and the guide were in good condition in the city of Cuzco in southeastern Peru after the accident.

Local authorities were still investigating the circumstances of the incident and checking into the possibility of negligence on the part of the tour company. According to a Channel 10 report, local police in Peru suspect that the raft overturned because it was overloaded. The raft in question was meant for six persons. The police investigation found that the craft had a hard time handling the rapids, and that four of the tourists fell in immediately, of whom two made it safely back onto the raft.

The Apurimac River, which runs through a deep gorge in the Andes Mountains, is popular with adventure tourists. Two Israelis have been killed there in rafting accidents in previous years.

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