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Israel denies Ukraine weapons again

While West Jerusalem is adamant it won’t arm Kiev, it is reportedly offering intelligence support to Zelensky’s military

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz refused a request for weapons from his Ukrainian counterpart, Alexey Reznikov, during a phone call on Monday. Despite its official aversion to arming Ukraine, Israel is reportedly offering Kiev military intelligence and certain weapons on the private market.

Gantz told Reznikov that Israel supports Ukraine in its conflict with Russia, but would not supply arms due to “operative restrictions,” the Times of Israel reported. The restrictions in question likely refer to Israel’s air sorties in Syria, which depend on communication with Russia, which controls much of the country’s airspace.

The Israeli minister said that his country would continue to provide humanitarian aid to Ukraine, as well as protective equipment such as helmets and body armor.

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Several planned calls between Gantz and Reznikov were canceled over the past week, with Kiev scrapping a conversation scheduled for last Thursday after Gantz definitively stated that Israel would not supply any weapons to Ukraine.

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Ukrainian officials have called on Israel to donate air defense systems for several months, but these calls intensified after Russia began pounding Ukraine’s power infrastructure with autonomous ‘kamikaze’ drones. With Ukraine’s NATO-supplied defenses unable to stop the attacks, the Foreign Ministry in Kiev sent a letter to West Jerusalem last week urging the Jewish state to “immediately” deliver air defense systems – including Iron Dome missile batteries – to Kiev.

Despite its refusal to directly ship weapons to Ukraine, the Israeli government is reportedly turning a blind eye to its defense contractors circumventing this policy. One Israeli firm is supplying anti-drone systems to Poland, with Warsaw then shipping them on to Kiev, Hebrew news site Zman Yisrael reported last month. The company “pretends not to be aware” that its products are being moved on into Ukraine, the report alleged.

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Israel has also “provided intelligence useful for targeting” Russia’s drones, the New York Times reported on Sunday, citing an unnamed Ukrainian official. The newspaper did not elaborate further on the official’s claim and did not provide any confirmation from the Israeli side.

https://ift.tt/yfqlW3k 24, 2022 at 07:47PM
from RT – Daily news

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