On arrival, the ZAKA delegation was dispatched to the collapsed 8-storey university building where cries could be heard from the trapped students. After 38 hours of work around the clock working with the Mexican military delegation and other Jewish volunteers from Mexico, the ZAKA volunteers succeeded Saturday in pulling eight students alive from the rubble.
Amid the stench and chaos, the ZAKA delegation took time out to recite Shabbat prayers - a surreal sight of ultra-orthodox men wrapped in prayer shawls standing on the collapsed buildings. Many locals sat quietly in the rubble, staring at the men as they prayed facing Jerusalem. At the end of the prayers, they crowded around the delegation and kissed the prayer shawls.