Ukraine delegation visits ‘Israel’, ‘Tel Aviv’ covers up visit: Media

28 Nov 2022

Source: Israeli Media

By Al Mayadeen English 

The Israeli occupation concealed a visit made by a senior Ukrainian delegation to occupied Palestine due to sensitivity with Russia.

Israeli-made Gaia Amir MRAP armored vehicle, spotted near Kherson in service of the Ukrainian army.

A senior Ukrainian delegation, which included a high-ranking military figure, visited “Israel” covertly last week, Israeli media said on Monday.

“Around a year ago, since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Israel has been walking on eggshells trying to maintain relations with the two parties. This evening, we report for the first time on news about a secret visit whose importance Israel tried to downplay,” Israeli Channel 13 political affairs correspondent Moriah Wahlberg said.

“Israel” expressed several times over the past few months its support for Kiev but refrained from going overboard so as to not further deteriorate its relations with Moscow. 

“Israel is actively helping Ukraine, but without crossing the ‘red lines.’ These ‘red lines’ are connected with a very difficult situation in the Middle East. Israel is, in fact, sitting on top of a powder keg. Israel needs to act very carefully and take into account, first of all, the interests of its own security,” Israeli occupation ambassador to Ukraine Michael Brodsky said.

Wahlberg explained that the Israeli occupation has been trying to downplay the visit’s importance due to the sensitive situation with Russia.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky tweeted Thursday that he spoke via phone with Israeli occupation President Isaac Herzog.

In the Tweet, Zelensky said he hopes to deepen bilateral ties between Ukraine and “Israel” after the occupation completes the formation of its new government, adding that he outlined Ukraine’s energy needs during the conversation and invited “Tel Aviv” to take part in the Black Sea grain deal initiative. 

Zelensky’s outcry comes against the backdrop of recent heavy shelling led by Russia in response to Ukraine’s terrorist attack on the Crimean bridge on October 8.

There have been talks about a Ukrainian delegation coming to occupied Palestine since last week. “The talk revolves around a military delegation, including a high-ranking official in the Ukrainian armed forces. Reportedly, this could be one of the deputies of the Ukrainian Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces,” she added.

The Ukrainians, according to the Israeli correspondent, arrived in occupied Palestine in the past few days. 

“The official goal of this visit is to push forward with building early warning systems against missile attacks that Israeli said would give to Ukraine as part of the aid it is sending Kiev,” Wahlberg added.

She also revealed that the Ukrainian delegation met with high-ranking officials in the Israeli occupation forces and the Israeli ministry of security.

Israeli media said that despite the EASs being the main goal of the visit, the Ukrainians demanded more military aid during it. “They want weapons and the technical support that Israel pledged will not suffice.”

Later on in the day, a source commented to Israeli Channel 13 on the news, saying there was no change in the occupation’s policies. “We do not intend to supply Ukraine with weapons. We are talking with them about early warning systems, and as we said, this visit remained under the radar in Israel due to the Russian attitude toward Israeli aid to Ukraine.”

Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev in October warned “Israel” against providing weapons to Ukraine, stressing that any move to boost Kiev’s arsenal would severely damage bilateral relations.

The problem is not only in military or defense aid, the source said, stressing that any aid to Ukraine is met with a tough response from Russia, which is why “Tel Aviv” has been trying to downplay the whole affair.

On October 18, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba announced that Kiev will be sending an official note to the Israeli occupation requesting immediate air defense supplies and cooperation in the security sector.

Ukrainian and Israeli officials confirmed the news to the Israeli channel. However, the Israeli ministry of security and the Ukrainian embassy in the Israeli occupation did not respond to a request for comment, the channel claimed.

The Israeli Haaretz newspaper reported on Thursday, citing sources familiar with the matter, that the Israeli occupation spent millions of dollars to appease its western partners by procuring undisclosed strategic materials for Ukraine after “Tel Aviv” faced pressure to send the arms to Kiev via a third country.

Reportedly, the United States is the party that pressured the occupation, which had to go against its proclaimed stance to only send humanitarian assistance to Ukraine.

The Biden administration demanded the occupation to switch from strictly providing humanitarian supplies and expanding its assistance to Ukraine and giving military equipment, prompting “Tel Aviv” to fund the purchase of strategic materials for Ukraine, including air defense systems, Haaretz reported.

The agreement to deliver undisclosed strategic materials, reached via a second NATO member state that already supplies Ukraine with arms, saw “Israel” spending millions of dollars on military assistance to Ukraine. 

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