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March 8, 2022 10:33 am

Ukrainian FM Apologizes to El Al for Claiming It Accepts ‘Blood-Soaked’ Money

avatar by i24 News

Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba speaks during a news conference with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken at the State Department in Washington, DC, February 22, 2022. Carolyn Kaster/Pool via REUTERS

i24 News – Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba apologized on Tuesday for accusing Israel’s El Al airline of attempting to bypass sanctions on Russia by accepting payments through the country’s Mir electronic fund transfer system.

In a tweet on Monday, Kuleba posted a screenshot of a booking page on El Al’s website showing the Mir logo along with Visa and Mastercard.

“While the world sanctions Russia for its barbaric atrocities in Ukraine, some prefer to make money soaked in Ukrainian blood,” he alleged. “Immoral and a blow to Ukrainian-Israeli relations.”

El Al stated shortly after that it stopped accepting Mir on February 28, four days after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

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“It is unfortunate that a simple check was not done with us before the misleading tweet, as the facts are entirely different,” the airline responded.

Kuleba acknowledged his mistake Tuesday morning, responding to El Al’s clarification stating, “Indeed, the ‘Mir’ payment button remained on the website, but the use of it was blocked.”

“I am grateful to El Al for its important humanitarian operations and convey my apologies,” he continued.

He deleted the original tweet shortly after.

El Al is one of the few airlines in Western allied states that are still operating flights to Russia, stating it was doing so at the request of the Israeli government and “will continue to get Israelis and Jews out of Russia so long as it is possible,” the Times of Israel reported.

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