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Dr Lily Pereg (left) and sister Pyrhia Sarusi. Photo: JTA

AN Australian university professor who was travelling with her Israeli sister in Argentina has been missing for more than a week.

Dr Lily Pereg, 54, an associate professor of microbiology at the University of New England, and Pyrhia Sarusi, 63, were last seen on January 12 in the Argentine city of Mendoza.
Pereg moved to Australia in the mid-1990s.

The pair had been visiting Sarusi’s son, Gil Pereg, 36, in Mendoza. The women last communicated with family members in Israel and Australia at 2.30am on Friday, January 11, but have not been heard from since.

The next day they visited Sarusi’s son, who is the local chairman of five companies established by his mother, and who is under investigation on suspicion of involvement in the disappearance. Police found four guns in his home, money in euros, dollars and pesos totalling $80,000, and dozens of cats and dogs.

Gil Pereg told investigators he saw the pair get on board a public bus in the hours prior to their suspected disappearance to return to their rented apartment.

Israel Police investigators were scheduled to arrive in Mendoza to help in the investigation.

A GoFundMe campaign was established to raise funds to help pay a private investigator to locate the women. “The family has hired a retired police officer who knows the two personally, and speaks Spanish, English, and Hebrew. He is currently in Argentina helping with the investigation,”reads a message on the crowdfunding page.

JTA

GoFundMe page: bit.ly/2W5unY9