Israel, Jews and Ukraine

Israel is arming neo-Nazis in Ukraine

By Asa Winstanley
4 July 2018
Israeli arms are being sent to a heavily armed neo-Nazi militia in Ukraine, The Electronic Intifada has learned.
Azov Battalion online propaganda shows Israeli-licensed Tavor rifles in the fascist group’s hands, while Israeli human rights activists have protested arms sales to Ukraine on the basis that weapons might end up with anti-Semitic militias.
In a letter “about licenses for Ukraine” obtained by The Electronic Intifada, the Israeli defense ministry’s arms export agency says they are “careful to grant licenses” to arms exporters “in full coordination with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other government entities.”
The 26 June letter was sent in reply to Israeli lawyer Eitay Mack who had written a detailed request demanding Israel end all military aid to the country.
Azov’s official status in the Ukrainian armed forces means it cannot be verified that “Israeli weapons and training” are not being used “by anti-Semitic or neo-Nazi soldiers,” Mack and 35 other human rights activists wrote.
They had written that Ukrainian armed forces use rifles made in Israel “and are trained by Israelis,” according to reports in the country.
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Prime Minister of Israel arrives in Ukraine

Aug. 18, 2019
Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu landed Sunday in Ukraine. Touching down in Kiev, Netanyahu and his wife Sara were greeted with flowers and bread and salt by young Ukrainians clad in traditional outfits. Also welcoming them at the airport was Kiev mayor Vitali Klitschko, a former world boxing heavyweight champion.
In Kiev, Netanyahu met with Zelensky and Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, both of whom are Jewish. Ukraine is currently the only country besides Israel where both the president and the prime minister are Jewish.
Netanyahu will also visit a memorial at Babi Yar, where more than 30,000 Jews were killed in just two days during the Holocaust, and meet with local Jewish community leaders. Zelensky is set to accompany him to the memorial, which will be the first time a Ukrainian president accompanies an Israeli official to the site.
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