The family of 17-year old Yadaya Mula reunited on Thursday following three turbulent years, upon her arrival to Israel. Just days before her relatives made aliyah from Ethiopia, Yadaya was kidnapped while shopping at a grocery store and was forced to spend the following years as a servant in her abductors' house.
She eventually succeeded in escaping the house three weeks ago, with her relatives in Ethiopia arranging her immigration to Israel.
Yadaya arrived in Israel on Thursday morning following extensive efforts on the part of the Jewish Agency. Overwhelmed and excited, she hardly uttered a word.
"It was very hard for me. I didn't sleep a single night since she was kidnapped," Yadaya's mother related. "We haven't really started talking about everything she went through and we need to calm down – only then we will truly realize what we went through."
Mula family reunites (Photo: Adi Shashtiel)
Gaday Solomon was also on board the flight to Israel. His family made aliyah 30 years ago and after losing touch with him, authorities notified the family Gaday had died.
Nevertheless, the family contiuned to believe he was alive and kept on searching for him.
"We haven't seen my brother in 30 years and when we lost my father we were told he passed away, but we kept on looking for him," Gaday's brother, Nadav said.
"Each immigration round we would check whether someone heard of him and we finally managed to track him down in 2003. We flew to Ethiopia and identified him, but bureaucracy delayed his aliyah."
Gaday himself could barely contain his excitement at finally being reunited with his family. He said he had realized his dream after landing at the Ben-Gurion Airport.