Israeli official refutes Ukraine envoy claims on Uman pilgrimage

Diplomat says this was not the first time that Ambassador Korniychuk launches a media campaign harmful to bilateral Israel Ukraine ties, denies his data on Ukrainian nationals being barred from entering Israel

A Foreign Ministry official said on Sunday that there was no basis for threats made by Ukraine's envoy that Israelis would be prevented from their annual pilgrim to Uman, the burial site of a Hassidic Rabbi. "Officials holding more senior positions in the Ukrainian government made it clear to Senior Israeli officials, that there would be no such steps taken," he said.
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Earlier, Ukraine's ambassador to Israel, Yevgen Korniychuk said Kyiv would stop bilateral visa waiver agreements and would prevent the arrival of Israelis into the country after Israel had blocked Ukrainians from entering through the Ben Gurion International Airport.
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הילולה בציון הקבר, במהלך חגי תשרי
הילולה בציון הקבר, במהלך חגי תשרי
Jews on a pilgrimage to Uman in Ukraine
(Photo: AFP)
President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his weekly briefing to the citizens of Ukraine that The rights of Ukrainian citizens must be guaranteed.
"It is unthinkable that we would have to go out of our way to host tens of thousands of Israelis in Uman, with a high-security risk, and with a huge logistical effort, when on the other hand the Israeli government mistreats our citizens who come to Israel as part of the treaty between our two countries. If Israel wants its citizens to be able to come to Ukraine as tourists, I believe that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should intervene, personally, in finding a solution to the current state of affairs," he said.
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נשיא אוקראינה וולודימיר זלנסקי בביקור ב בשבדיה לצד ראש ממשלתה אולף קריסטרסון 19 באוגוסט
נשיא אוקראינה וולודימיר זלנסקי בביקור ב בשבדיה לצד ראש ממשלתה אולף קריסטרסון 19 באוגוסט
Volodymyr Zelensky
(Photo: Jonathan Nachstrand / AFP)
The Israeli diplomat said Israel has proven its commitment to Ukraine and its people and continues to supply them with humanitarian assistance and support in the international arena. "The data presented by the ambassador, showing citizens of Ukraine being barred from entry, are overblown and far from the truth," he said. "Steps are being taken at points of entry, to assist Ukrainians wishing to enter Israel," he said adding that this was not the first time that Korniychuk was attempting to create a media campaign that was harmful to bilateral relations.
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