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A Tale of Life-Saving in Mideast

September 23, 2002|From Reuters

JERUSALEM — The kidney of a Jewish teenager killed in a suicide bombing in Tel Aviv last week has been transplanted into a Palestinian girl--saving her life, officials said Sunday.

Yasmin abu Ramila, 7, received the kidney of Jonathan Jesner, a 19-year-old student from Scotland who was on a Tel Aviv bus Thursday when a Palestinian militant detonated his explosives.

Five people were killed immediately. Jesner, who had postponed medical school to attend a religious school in Israel, was critically wounded and died a day later.

Officials at Schneider Children's Hospital in the central Israeli town of Petah Tikva said Sunday that Yasmin was in good condition after Saturday's transplant.

Jesner's family volunteered to donate his organs and placed no restrictions on the choice of recipients. "We believed it was what he would have wanted us to do," said his stepmother, who declined to be named.

His oldest brother, Ari Jesner, said after the transplant that the recipient's religion or nationality was "unimportant."

"The most important principle here is that life was given to another human being," he said. "We are happy and delighted that Yoni's memory will live on."

Yasmin has a genetic disorder that leads to kidney failure and has been treated in Jerusalem hospitals since she was an infant.

"I don't know what to say to thank the family of the man killed in the attack," the Maariv newspaper quoted Yasmin's mother, Rina, as saying. "I grieve for their loss and thank them for their donation."

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