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Israeli Rescue Team Arrives in Brazil To Help After Dam Breaks

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JERUSALEM, Israel - An Israeli military search and rescue delegation arrived in Brazil on Sunday night to assist in rescue efforts after a dam collapsed there on Friday.

At least 58 people are dead and more than 300 people missing after iron ore waste from a mine flooded the city of Brumadinho.

Israel sent about 130 soldiers from its Home Front Command (Israel's Homeland Security) including engineering experts, doctors, search and rescue teams and firefighters.

National Search and Rescue Unit commander Col. Golan Vach is leading the delegation.

"We are looking forward to work(ing) side by side with local authorities, units who (have) already worked for three days. We hope with you, with the Brazilian people, to find and to rescue as much (many) people as we can," Vach said on the delegation's arrival.

"Brazil is in need of aid.  Israel will provide the best humanitarian aid possible that we are able to arrange on short notice in order to save lives and assist the Brazilian people," Vach said before the delegation left.

Despite its small size, Israel is often one of the first countries to offer assistance around the world when disasters strike.  

CBN's recent documentary "To Life: How Israeli Volunteers Are Changing the World" highlights such work of Israeli volunteers stepping in to help around the world.

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About The Author

Julie Stahl

Julie Stahl is a correspondent for CBN News in the Middle East. A Hebrew speaker, she has been covering news in Israel full-time for more than 20 years. Julie’s life as a journalist has been intertwined with CBN – first as a graduate student in Journalism, then as a journalist with Middle East Television (METV) when it was owned by CBN from 1989-91, and now with the Middle East Bureau of CBN News in Jerusalem since 2009. As a correspondent for CBN News, Julie has covered Israel’s wars with Gaza, rocket attacks on Israeli communities, stories on the Jewish communities in Judea, Samaria, and the