Israel's first Kenyan soldier

Monday, May 28, 2007 |  by Staff Writer

Arusi Medlia became Israel's first Kenyan soldier last month, just two years after discovering he was Jewish and an Israeli citizen.

Israel's Ynet news portal reported that Medlia's father left Israel in 1970 to start a restaurant in the Kenyan port city of Mombassa. The expatriate eventually got married and had a son, whom he and his wife raised as a Christian.

Two years ago, which was two years after his parents were killed in a car accident, Arusi discovered his father's true identity. Arusi also found that his father had secured Israeli citizenship for him upon his birth.

There was apparently no hesitation. Arusi packed his bags and immigrated to the Jewish state, taking up residence in Kibbutz Na'an and quickly learning Hebrew.

Having mastered the language of his forefathers, Arusi promptly enlisted in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), where he has found a new family.

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