Mashgiach Stays in Turkish Mosque Overnight Due to Intense Snowstorm [VIDEO & PHOTOS]


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A frum man who was in Turkey as a kashrus mashgiach was forced to spend the night in a mosque after becoming stranded in a severe snowstorm.

The Chief Rabbi of Turkey, Rabbi Mendy Chitrik, said that the mashgiach was on the E-5 highway when a paralyzing snowstorm caused hundreds of motorists to become stranded. After sitting for hours on the road, Turkish Army trucks came and evacuated the motorists to a mosque near Instanbul Airport.

“The people were very nice and helped us at the heated mosque,” the mashgiach, Rabbi Yisroel Elbaum told Bchadrei Chareidim. “At 11 in the morning they took us back to our car, and from there we drove back to the hotel. We were on the road for 25 hours we were on the road. Rabbi Mendy Chitrik helped us a lot; it is a situation that I won’t easily forget.”

Turkey has approximately 400 factories that churn out food-related goods, and dozens of mashgichim are in Turkey throughout the year to oversee the kashrus aspects of the production process.

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  1. Was this the first time a mashgiach or a rav was evacuated to a mosque or church being used as a temporary emergency shelter? Not sure I understand the significance of the event.

  2. A mosque is not so bad. A church would’ve been worse. Islam is a monotheistic religion they believe in one Borei Ola, no problem with az or shittuf. I’m sure the rabbi knew better than me but I think he would even have been allowed to daven there, which would not be the case in a church.

  3. ready now> So, therefore, does not believe in Hashem!

    I don’t think this is halakha. R Shmuel Salanter would keep 4 amot from the muslim on a prayer mat.

  4. Ready now
    So the Rav should have stood outside the mosque in the cold, freezing his behind and perhaps build a snowman until the snow ended or he could find an Uber driver to take him to the nearest shul??

  5. It would have been assur to take shelter in a church, perhaps even in a case of pikuach nefesh. Whereas there is no problem doing so in a mosque.

    RN, Moslems do believe in Hashem, they just think the Torah is a forgery, and their nonsense book is His “real” words. But in any case that’s not relevant; the point is not what they do believe but what they don’t. They don’t believe in avoda zara, so they don’t worship it at their mosques, therefore it is permitted to derive benefit from a mosque, e.g. by taking shelter in it.