BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: World: Middle East
Front Page 
World 
Africa 
Americas 
Asia-Pacific 
Europe 
Middle East 
South Asia 
-------------
From Our Own Correspondent 
-------------
Letter From America 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 

Saturday, 26 May, 2001, 20:43 GMT 21:43 UK
Courage of the survivors
Batsheva Tal, left, sits at the bedside of her son, Moti Tal, with girlfriend Imbal Katz (right)
The search for more survivors has been called off
Rescue workers have praised the courage of the survivors of Thursday night's wedding disaster in Jerusalem.

Nahum Nesher described how he arrived at the devastated site of the Versailles hall to see a hand sticking out of the twisted metal and rubble, waving as if calling for help.


I want to tell you that you have an incredible daughter

Rescue worker Ami Shukrun to a survivor's mother
Dikla Nahmias, who was trapped under blocks of concrete, lay seriously wounded after plunging three floors as the floor caved in beneath her during the party.

"'Shalom, how are you,' was the first thing I told her... She said: 'My name is Dikla.'"

"I told her: 'Dikla, be calm. We will save you. It might take time, patience,"' Mr Nesher told Israel army radio.

Shards of concrete

Another rescue worker, Ami Shukrun, said Dikla helped save her own life by following complicated instructions.

"I want to tell you that you have an incredible daughter," Mr Shukrun told Dikla's mother.

Woman carried to safety
Hundreds of people were attending the wedding party on Thursday
Wedding photographer Eron Ziv described how amid the scenes of utter mayhem, the groom sought out his new bride.

Eron Ziv, along with hundreds of guests plunged from the third storey to the ground after the floor gave way beneath them.

He said the bodies under the rubble were pelted every so often by shards of concrete that kept falling "like drops of water".

"To my left was the bride," Mr Ziv told Israel army radio. "She was lying there. And the groom wandered among the people and said 'I am sorry. Why is this happening to me?'

"And he lifted up the bride with his arms," Mr Ziv said.

Trapped

Ronnie Mor, 47, also pulled his wife, Hedva, to safety, but remained trapped himself for an extra 90 minutes, unable to walk because of fractured hips, shoulder and ribs.

"The first thing I asked her was if she was breathing, then if she was bleeding and where she was hurt," Mr Mor said in an interview from his hospital bed.

He said instincts probably helped him muster the necessary strength to kick a slab of concrete to free his wife, aged 44, after he realised her hand was trapped under it.

Some survivors will not only have to cope with physical pain, but with the emotional pain of losing loved ones.

Sima Shriki survived with a broken leg, but her father-in-law and brother-in-law were killed.

Her six-year-old son fell with her and is expected to have surgery for a leg injury.

"I had been dancing with him. I had been holding his hand, and we went down together, floor by floor," Mrs Shriki said.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Middle East stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Middle East stories