Israel Police
Israel Police (illustration) Photo by Motti Milrod
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Police have appealed to the public for help in finding a Haifa woman who allegedly kidnapped her two grandchildren.

The woman, Julia Zarashkin, 60, allegedly kidnapped 4-year-old Ivan and 5-year-old Andre on Monday, after their 29-year-old mother, Rozalia, came to Israel with the boys for a vacation.

Rozalia moved to Ukraine 11 years ago, where she married and started a family. Since then, she has visited Israel three times, she said, so her children could see their grandparents.

The mother reportedly left her children in their grandmother’s care while she went to the dentist yesterday, during which time the grandmother allegedly made off with the children, allegedly leaving behind a letter explaining that she wanted the children to stay in Israel and that she was taking them on summer vacation with her. She reportedly took a small amount of clothing for the children.

Rozalia said her mother had in the past asked her to return to Israel, and that she had wanted the children to be raised here.

“They can’t be too long without me,” Rozalia added. “They’ve never been without me for so long.” She called on her mother to come back, saying that they would work matters out between themselves if she did.

The police called on anyone knowing anything about Zarashkin or the children to call the police hotline at 100.