Israel Condemns Russian Attack on Ukraine: A Violation of the International Order

Israel's foreign minister decries the large-scale strikes and adds Jerusalem is ready to provide humanitarian assistance to Ukrainians

Jonathan Lis
Jonathan Lis
Black smoke rises from a military airport in Chuguyev near Kharkiv on Thursday.
Black smoke rises from a military airport in Chuguyev near Kharkiv on Thursday. Credit: ARIS MESSINIS - AFP
Jonathan Lis
Jonathan Lis

Israel's Foreign Minister Yair Lapid condemned the Russian attack on Ukraine Thursday, calling it a blatant violation of the international order, and said Israel is ready to provide humanitarian assistance to the citizens of Ukraine.

"War is not the way to solve conflicts," Lapid said in a press conference in Jerusalem. "Israel has … good relations with both Russia and Ukraine. There are Jews in both countries, and safeguarding them is our top priority."

"I call on every Israeli to leave Ukraine now while the roads are still open," added Lapid.

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett echoed Lapid in a plea on Thursday for all Israeli citizens in Ukraine to leave the country immediately.

"Get out now. Save your life. Our people are waiting to pick you up at the border crossings in the west of the country," he said in a speech at a graduation ceremony for military officers.

Addressing world Jewry, he added "The door of the State of Israel is always open."

"These are difficult and tragic moments, and our hearts go out to the citizens of Ukraine who have fallen into this situation without committing any injustice on their own part," Bennett said.

On Wednesday, Israel's Foreign Ministry issued its first official statement on the crisis between Kyiv and Moscow, expressing its support for Ukraine's territorial integrity and sovereignty.

Following the statement's release, Russia's UN envoy condemned Israel's occupation of the Golan Heights and said the country does not recognize Israel's sovereignty in the region.

"We are concerned over Tel Aviv’s announced plans for expanding settlement activity in the occupied Golan Heights, which directly contradicts the provisions of the 1949 Geneva Convention," the envoy said.

Estimates in Israel hold that there will not be a significant Russian response to Israel's statement, and that it was an intelligent move by Israel, which has updated the Moscow embassy. Israel did not inform Russia before Lapid's statement on Thursday.

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