Meir Porush
Meir PorushYonatan Sindel/Flash90

The Minister of Jerusalem Affairs and Jewish Heritage, Meir Porush, was asked to lead the supervision and coordination of those making the pilgrimage to the shrine of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov in the Ukrainian city of Uman for Rosh Hashanah. Due to the Ukraine war, direct travel is more difficult than other years, particularly by air. The majority of pilgrims are expected to fly to countries that share a border with Ukraine, and enter at a land border crossing.

As part of the National Security Council's ongoing review of events from previous such pilgrimages, it was decided that there was need of a minister who would handle various aspects of the border crossings and regulating the arrival of the masses to Ukraine.

After the success of the Lag B’Omer celebrations in Meron, led by Minister Porush, which was significantly based on the cooperation with those arriving for the celebration, he was approached by the National Security Council with a request that he take part this year in the preparation for the mass pilgrimage to Uman.

Minister Porush, and the staff of the Ministry of Jerusalem and Israel's Tradition, held a series of meetings on the subject, with senior officials of the National Security Council, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Airports Authority, the Ministry of National Security, and the Israel Police.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is aware that despite the travel warning for Ukraine due to the war, many Hasidicrworshippers will still travel to Uman for Rosh Hashanah, and everything must be prepared accordingly, including service routes for those that will arrive in the country through the land border crossings in the absence of flights.

As part of the first discussions held by Minister Porush with the relevant authorities, it was agreed that the Foreign Ministry headquarters would, as mentioned, instruct the ambassadors of Israel in Poland, Moldova, Hungary and Romania to contact the local authorities with a request to increase the border crossing staff and quotas to Ukraine in the days before Rosh Hashanah

It is the intention of Minister Porush to appoint a dedicated project manager, who will be in personal contact with all the public leaders of the Breslov communities who usually stay in Uman on Rosh Hashanah, and will be entrusted with optimal coordination with the relevant government officials who coordinate the various aspects at the political, security, safety, and medical levels.

Minister Porush said: "I congratulate the governing bodies who understood that many of the followers of Breslov will continue to preserve the tradition and travel to stay at the shrine of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov for Rosh Hashanah, and we must prepare wisely for this."

"With the blessing of the Hasidic rabbis in Breslov, I will work to coordinate with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the other relevant parties, to make sure that those who choose to travel to Uman will receive the service they deserve. The situation on the ground is not simple, and it is important that the public be attentive to the instructions, in the hope that we will succeed in preventing danger to human life."

"I thank the Minister of Foreign Affairs Eli Cohen, the Head of the National Security Council Tzachi Hanegbi, and the Director General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ronen Levy, who responded to my request on the issue of strengthening the land border crossings between Ukraine and the neighboring countries, and I intend to continue working with them and the other relevant parties to faithfully fulfill the mission on behalf of the followers of Breslov", he concluded.