Ukraine seeks Israel aid as Kyiv moves to cut Iran ties after drone attacks

Ukrainian FM says submitted proposal to President Zelensky to cut diplomatic ties with Tehran after Russian attacks using 'Iranian-made' drones; will speak to PM Lapid on Thursday to present Kyiv's request to receive military support

Ukraine's foreign minister said on Tuesday his country would seek military aid from Israel as Kyiv moves to cut diplomatic ties with Tehran after a wave of Russian attacks using what the Ukrainians say are Iranian-made drones.
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  • Russia launched dozens of "kamikaze" drones on targets in Ukraine on Monday, striking energy infrastructure and killing several civilians.
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    מתקפה מל"טים קייב אוקראינה
    מתקפה מל"טים קייב אוקראינה
    Aftermath of a Russian 'kamikaze' drone attack in Kyiv, October 17, 2022
    (Photo: Reuters)
    Ukraine says the attacks were carried out with Iranian-made Shahed-136 drones. Tehran denies supplying the drones.
    Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said he was submitting a proposal to President Volodymyr Zelensky to formally cut diplomatic ties with Tehran.
    Kuleba said Kyiv was certain they were Iranian and would be ready to share a "bag of evidence" with European powers in doubt.
    "Tehran bears full responsibility for the destruction of relations with Ukraine", Kuleba told a news conference. "I am submitting to the president of Ukraine a proposition to sever diplomatic ties with Iran."
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    שר החוץ של אוקראינה דמיטרו קולבה
    שר החוץ של אוקראינה דמיטרו קולבה
    Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba
    (Photo: EPA)
    Kuleba said he had urged the European Union to impose sanctions on Iran "for helping Russia to kill Ukrainians."
    "Severe sanctions against Iran are especially relevant right now, as we are witnessing reports on Iranian intentions to give Russia ballistic missiles to be used against Ukrainians," he said.
    "The actions of Iran are vile and deceitful. We won't suffer them, because all those actions were done while Iran told us that they didn't support the war and won't support any of the sides with their weapons."
    Kuleba also added that Kyiv would send an official note to Israel seeking immediate air defense supplies and cooperation in the sector.
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    מתקפה מל"טים קייב אוקראינה
    מתקפה מל"טים קייב אוקראינה
    A Russian suicide drone flying over Kyiv, October 17, 2022
    (Photo: AFP)
    Ynet has learned that Prime Minister Yair Lapid will hold a phone call with Kuleba on Thursday in which Kyiv's top diplomat will present his country's official request to receive military support.
    An Israeli security official told Ynet that he does not believe that such a move would work out in the near future despite Israel's sympathy with the plight of the Ukrainian people and the desire to help them.
    Earlier on Tuesday, a member of Israel's decision-making security cabinet, Justice Minister Gideon Sa'ar, told national broadcaster Army Radio: "Our support for Ukraine does not include weapons systems and weaponry - and there is no change to that position."
    While Israel has condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine and provided Kyiv with humanitarian relief, it has stopped short of also providing military support, citing concern for continued cooperation with Moscow over next-door Syria.

    Itamar Eichner contributed to this report.
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