Aiia Maasarwe's father Saeed Maasarwe is seen at the vigil for his daughter on the steps of Parliament House in Melbourne, Australia, January 18, 2019.
(photo credit: AAP IMAGE/STEFAN POSTLES/VIA REUTERS)
The body of murdered Israeli-Arab student Aiia Maasarwe is on its way home to Israel from Australia, Walla reported on Monday.
Maasarwe's body was released to her father by Australian authorities and preparations were underway for her body to be transported for burial in her home town of Baka al-Garbiya, close to Haifa.
The flight is scheduled to land in Israel on Wednesday.
A mass funeral is scheduled to take place in the village, with schools in the area closing to allow students to participate in the procession. Schools will also fly black flags of mourning on the day of the funeral.
Maasarwe, a 21-year-old exchange student at La Trobe University in Melbourne, was murdered during the early hours of Wednesday morning while on her way home from a comedy show in northern suburb of Bandura.
Her sister was on the phone with her when she was attacked.
The mayor of Baka al-Gharbiya has chastised top Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Reuven Rivlin, for their silence on the murder.
"The silence of the Israeli government about the collective personal story of Baka al-Gharbiya’s daughter is more than outrageous, and your silence is deafening... We hope that you will correct the negative omission in a proper and appropriate manner [about this] tragic event,” he said in an open letter.
On Monday morning, 20-year-old Codey Herrmann appeared in court on charges of raping and murdering Maasarwe. He was remanded in custody until June. He did not apply for bail.
Herrmann, believed to be a homeless aspiring rapper, was arrested by Victoria police on Friday night.
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