A Swedish woman who is the daughter of a Holocaust survivor is facing deportation from Israel after authorities rejected her request to stay in the country because her father had allegedly converted to Christianity.
Rebecca Floer, 64, only has until Nov. 26 to leave Israel after its Population and Immigration Authority ordered her deportation as her request to stay on the grounds of the Law of Return had not been approved. The denial of her application stemmed from authorities' claim that she was part of a missionary group and that her father had embraced the Christian faith, Newsweek detailed.
Under Israel's Law of Return, Jews have the right to become Israeli citizens. The grandchildren of Jews and individuals who were married to one were also granted the right to enter the country and reside there starting 1970.
Floer, who spent her childhood in Austria, denied the claim that her father had rejected Judaism or converted to Christianity. Although she admitted that she was baptized and had been linked with a Christian group during an event, she has reportedly left the church and is Jewish.
According to Israeli authorities, Floer's belief in Jesus was a factor which contributed to their decision to deport her. The Swedish woman, on the other hand, reasoned that her decision to move to Israel was propelled by the rising anti-Semitism in Europe.
While Floer's chances of staying in Israel may appear bleak, a 102-year-old Holocaust survivor recently had the good fortune of meeting a nephew he never knew existed. Eliahu Pietruszka thought his entire family had already died after he fled Poland, but he was caught in an emotional embrace with his brother's 66-year-old son, Alexandre, who flew from Russia to see him, The Associated Press reported.
Israel's Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial's online database of Holocaust victims was instrumental in Pietruszka's meeting with his nephew. However, the emotional encounter may likely be one of the last as the number of survivors is already falling.