October 2, 2023 7:15 am

Ukraine warns Israel anew: Latest update — RT World News

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Kiev has issued a warning to Israel, stating that it may suspend visa-free travel agreements with the country due to alleged mistreatment of Ukrainians. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky had initially mentioned the mistreatment of Ukrainian nationals abroad in a speech, without explicitly naming Israel. However, Ukrainian Ambassador Evgeny Kornichuk clarified that the remarks were indeed directed at Israel.

Ambassador Kornichuk emphasized that the Ukrainian government will not tolerate the humiliation of its citizens upon entering Israel. Referring to Article 7 of the intergovernmental agreement, he stated that they are prepared to suspend the bilateral visa-waiver deals. This potential suspension would have a particular impact on Breslover Hasidim pilgrims who visit the Ukrainian town of Uman to celebrate the Jewish New Year and pay respects at the tomb of Reb Nachman of Bratslav, the founder of the movement.

“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 a huge logistical effort, while the Israeli government abuses our citizens who come to Israel within the framework of a treaty between the two countries,” said Ambassador Kornichuk. He urged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to personally address the issue if Israel wants its citizens to continue visiting Ukraine as tourists.

According to the existing agreements between Ukraine and Israel, Ukrainian tourists can stay in Israel for up to three months under a simplified visa process. Furthermore, the time-limit cap has been suspended for non-Jewish Ukrainian refugees amid the ongoing conflict between Moscow and Kiev. However, Ambassador Kornichuk claimed that 10% of Ukrainian visitors to Israel are deported without any explanation.

In response to the accusations, Israeli authorities have denied mistreating Ukrainians. Interior and Health Minister Moshe Arbel stated that Israel welcomes tourists from Ukraine and other countries. He explained that the Population, Immigration, and Border Authority operates according to its legal authority when there is suspicion of unlawful use of tourist visas for work or settlement.

Recent weeks have seen a noticeable strain in relations between Israel and Ukraine. Kiev publicly expressed its outrage over Israel’s decision to cease providing free healthcare for thousands of refugees staying in the country. The Ukrainian authorities have been discontented with Israel’s alleged “pro-Russian” stance and perceived lack of real help, leading to considerations of various retaliatory measures.

As the situation unfolds, the future of visa-free travel agreements between Ukraine and Israel remains uncertain. Both countries will need to address the issues and find a resolution to ensure the smooth movement of tourists and maintain positive bilateral relations.

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Original Source: Ukraine warns Israel anew: Latest update — RT World News

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