Israel to Help Save Life of Critically Ill Jordanian Girl

Less than one week after making peace with Jordan, Israel has said it will try to save a 12-year-old Jordanian girl who needs a bone-marrow transplant.

Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin gave the go-ahead for about $7,000 to be spent on conducting tests to find a donor for Heba Shaban, whose father turned to Rabin and Jerusalem’s Hadassah Hospital for help in treating her critical case of anemia.

A day after the Israeli-Jordanian peace treaty was signed on Oct. 26, Rushdi Shaban faxed a request that his daughter undergo a bone-marrow transplant in Israel, after her doctors in Jordan said they could not help her.

The father also called Dr. Shimon Slavin, head of the bone-marrow transplant center at Hadassah, with details of her illness.

“The greatest chance of saving the girl’s life is a bone-marrow transplant from a suitable donor, and for that purpose blood samples of relatives will be turned over from Jordan to Israel in the coming days,” a spokesman for Rabin said.

Slavin said the medical effort was an example of the good will that has been established between the two nations in an era of peace.

“The special thing about opening relations with the neighboring states is that it’s important we really experience peace among people” and not merely among politicians, he told Israel Army Radio.

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