At least 1,000 Jews left Georgia for Israel Tuesday after five days of war plunged the former Soviet republic into chaos. With the help of Rabbi Meir Kozlovsky, a Chabad-Lubavitch emissary in the capital city of Tbilisi, staff at the Israeli Embassy processed the paperwork of those seeking emergency transport to Tel Aviv.

According to Kozlovsky, some 200 Jewish residents of Tbilisi joined Israeli nationals, businesspeople and tourists for the armored convoys to the city’s international airport, and boarding on one of four flights out of the country. Along with Rabbi Abe Melech Rosenblatt, director of Tbilisi’s yeshiva, Kozlovsky attested to the local Georgians’ Jewish identities, a requirement for the issuance of a temporary Israeli passport.

As he waited with his wife and children at the airport – Kozlovsky will help provide for the Georgians’ needs in Israel – the rabbi said that despite the recent news of a ceasefire, people weren’t taking any chances.

“The safety of our community is our primary concern,” said Kozlovsky. “The situation changes minute to minute. Thank G‑d, we’re okay – we even had people at the synagogue for morning service – but we don’t know what the coming days will bring.”

Earlier Tuesday, an embassy employee said that Israel’s diplomatic mission would evacuate on Friday.

“The yard of the embassy is full of people,” she said.

For his part, Kozlovsky said that chief among his concerns is the fate of some 40 Jews in the city of Gori, which was cut off from the rest of the country in fighting on Monday.

“The town was bombed and the roads were cut,” said the rabbi. “There’s no way we can reach them. There’s one family from Gori that left last week, but their father stayed behind to protect the house from looters. We’re trying to get somebody out there to make sure everyone is okay.”