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Rescuer's Reward: Israeli Residency Granted to Hero Who Saved Colonel's Life Amidst Gaza Chaos

Mologta Tsgai

In a remarkable act of heroism, Israeli Interior Minister Moshe Arbel has officially granted Israeli residency to Molugata Tsagai, an Eritrean citizen who played a pivotal role in saving the life of Colonel Y., the Northern Brigade commander in Gaza, on October 7.

On that fateful morning, a van loaded with terrorists struck Colonel Y. on Route 35 between Netivot and Sderot, leaving him unconscious. Lt. Col. Y later awoke to find Molugata Tsagai at his side, staunchly tending to his injuries and reassuring him with the words, "I'm with you until the end."

Tsagai, an Eritrean who has sought asylum and work in Israel since 2008, was on his way to Tel Aviv with friends when a Hamas missile attack and terrorist infiltration disrupted their journey. Despite the chaos, Tsagai recognized Lt. Col. Y. across the road, injured from the terrorists' gunfire. Drawing on his military experience in Eritrea, Tsagai skillfully provided first aid, using his hands and shirt to stem the bleeding.

As gunfire erupted around them, Tsagai stayed steadfast, continuing to care for Lt. Col. Y. The ambulance delay and the departure of Tsagai's friends left him alone, but he remained committed to the injured officer, facing uncertainty and fear.

Even after the rescue from Hamas members by Border Guard officers, Tsagai encountered suspicion from a security forces member who approached him with a weapon. Fortunately, intervention from police officers confirmed Tsagai's innocence, and they endured further challenges in the ditch while terrorists roamed the area.

Hours later, a rescue team arrived, transporting Lt. Col. Y. to the hospital. Tsagai, still in the ditch, received support from citizens of Netivot who provided water and food. In the weeks that followed, Tsagai tirelessly searched for Lt. Col. Y. out of concern for his well-being, only to discover that Lt. Col. Y. was also searching for him to express gratitude.

Upon Lt. Col. Y.'s release from the hospital, he sought to thank Tsagai for saving his life and appealed to Interior Minister Moshe Arbel for assistance. In a heartening gesture of appreciation, Minister Arbel decided to grant Molugata Tsagai residency in Israel, recognizing his selfless act and the sacrifice made to preserve life.

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