The city of Buenos Aires honored Dr. Alejandro Roisentul, the Argentinean-born chairman of the Israeli Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, for his humanitarian work with Syrians wounded in the civil war raging across Israel’s northern border.
Roisentul, head of the maxillofacial surgery unit at Ziv Medical Center in Safed (Tzfat) about 40 miles from the Syrian border, has treated hundreds of the Syrians brought into Israel for medical care.
He graduated from the dental school of the University of Buenos Aires in 1986, three years before immigrating to Israel.
“Syrian injured people, even children, came to the border of Israel by foot in very bad condition. The IDF brought them to our hospital and we, the Israeli doctors, helped them,” Roisentul told Argentinean media.
“I have received people with serious injuries to their head and mouth, most of them can’t talk or eat correctly, and they return to Syria with a smile on their face. We also help them with clothes and sometimes they live for months in the hospital,” he said. “They looked at us as the enemy but after being taken care of in Israel they changed their views.”
“My dream is for the children of the Syrian wounded I treat to one day be able to play with my own children in peace,” said the 53-year-old father of three.
Since 2011, some 3,000 wounded Syrians have received free lifesaving medical treatment in Israeli hospitals, about half of them at Ziv.
“Roisentul is one of many others who made it their goal to improve the place they live in and help those in need,” said Israel’s Ambassador to Argentina Ilan Sztulman at the August 8 ceremony presided over by Argentine Deputy Minister of Justice and Human Rights Claudio Avruj. It was part of a series of events recognizing Israel’s humanitarian efforts on behalf of Syrians displaced or wounded by the ongoing fighting.