Wed, Oct 14, 2009 - Page 17 News List

Minister stunned by estranged relative’s phonecall 英國大臣電台call-in節目認遠親

AFP

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Britain’s Climate Change Secretary Ed Miliband was knocked for six when a long-lost Russian family member rang in as he appeared on a radio show in Moscow.

In the country to discuss climate change, Miliband was taking questions on Ekho Moskvy when an 87-year-old woman rang up and said in Russian: “I am Sofia Davidovna Miliband, I am your relative; I am the only one left.”

Thinking the call was a hoax, the radio station initially cut her short.

However, through translation the pair worked out that his great-great-grandfather was the brother of her grandfather, both of whom were born in the Jewish quarter of Warsaw.

The minister’s grandfather fled to Belgium in the 1920s and then to Britain on forged papers to escape the Nazis. Unbeknownst to them, another branch of the family had headed east to Moscow.

Ed, whose brother David is Britain’s foreign secretary, rushed off to meet Sofia, ditching the British ambassador and invited guests at a reception.

Miliband told BBC radio it was a “very moving and fantastic experience”, describing his relative as “an amazing woman”.

Sofia Miliband was once an expert on Iran at the Moscow School of Oriental Studies.

“After the program she described who she was, I knew that absolutely checked out and this was absolutely her,” he said.

“I did sort of vaguely know when I was a kid about her existence. The way I know about it, if you look on a library computer her name pops up.

“I’ve always slightly wondered about her ever since I was a kid. It was just amazing for me to come face to face with her and it was fantastic.”(AFP)

英國氣候變遷大臣艾德.米利班在莫斯科上廣播節目時,接到一通失聯已久的俄國家族成員來電,讓他大感震驚。

米利班在俄國討論氣候變遷問題時,接受艾克侯.莫司克維的訪問,接到一通一位八十七歲老太太的來電,她用俄語說:「我是蘇菲亞.妲薇朵夫娜.米利班,我是你的親戚;僅存的一個。」

電台原以為這是一通惡作劇電話,就打斷她的話。

然而,經過翻譯,他們倆才釐清他的曾曾祖父和她的祖父是兄弟,兩人都出生於華沙的猶太區。

艾德的哥哥大衛是英國外相,他得知消息後就拋下接待會上的英國大使和受邀賓客,趕去和蘇菲亞會面。

米利班對英國廣播公司廣播網表示,這是個「非常感人又不可思議的經驗」,並形容他這位親戚是「一位了不起的女士」。

蘇菲亞.米利班曾是莫斯科東方研究學院的伊朗專家。

他說:「聽完她在節目上的敘述後,我知道她所言絕對不假,絕對就是她本人。」

「我小時候就隱約知道她的存在。我會知道是因為,只要上圖書館用電腦一查,就會看到她的名字。」

「我從小就對她略感好奇。能和她親自碰面對我來說真不可思議,感覺太棒了。」(法新社╱翻譯:袁星塵)

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