Rabbis’ plea over divided family

British rabbis have spoken out in support of a Jewish mother fighting for the return of her two sons from her ex-husband.

Rachael Neustadt, from Hendon, won a landmark victory at Moscow City Court to bring back Daniel and Jonathan who are aged seven and five. The boys had been taken to Russia by their father, Ilya Neustadt, last December.

But Mr Neustadt appealed against the decision and a hearing date has been set for the end of the month.

“He’s just trying to prolong it. I will go back to Russia for the case,” said Ms Neustadt.

Rabbi Daniel Roselaar and Rabbi Malcolm Herman, who know the Neustadt family, have urged the community to support the distraught mother.

Rabbi Herman, the associate national director of education programme Seed, said: “As a community we must do everything possible to support Ms Neustadt in her fight for justice.”

Rabbi Roselaar, of Alei Tzion in Hendon, described Ms Neustadt as “a woman of true integrity, and a loving and gentle mother who has been cruelly separated from her children”.

He said it was essential for the boys well-being “that they be reunited with their mother as a matter of urgency”.

Last updated: 5:45pm, November 7 2013