A.Y. Katsof, head of the Heart of Israel who has been raising money for Ethiopian aliyah, was among those who greeted the arrivals at the airport.He said that while waiting for them to come out of customs, "it was so exciting, but sad at the same time. I met Ethiopian Israelis in the waiting area who were going to see brothers, sisters, cousins, even grandparents for the first time."
The new immigrants kissed the ground as they disembarked from the airplane.
"You could see how happy they were to have arrived in Israel," he said, adding that "they erupted in dances of joy to have made it back to the Holy Land after 2,000 years of longing."