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October 16, 2022 3:17 pm
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‘Time’ to Send Military Aid to Ukraine, Says Israeli Minister Amid Report Iran Said to Supply Missiles to Russia

avatar by Sharon Wrobel

A drone is seen at an underground site at an undisclosed location in Iran, in this handout image obtained on May 28, 2022. Iranian Army/WANA (West Asia News Agency)/Handout via REUTERS

An Israeli Minister on Sunday urged the country’s government to provide military aid to Ukraine amid reports that Iran will supply Russia with ballistic missiles during the ongoing conflict.

“This morning it was reported that Iran is transferring ballistic missiles to Russia,” tweeted Israel’s Diaspora Affairs Minister Nachman Shai. “There is no longer any doubt where Israel should stand in this bloody conflict.”

“The time has come for Ukraine to receive military aid as well, just as the USA and NATO countries provide,” he demanded.

Shai’s comments were triggered by a report in the The Washington Post that Iran plans to send Russia surface-to-surface missiles to help build up its dwindling arsenal to strike Ukrainian cities and military positions. According to two unnamed officials, Iran is readying a first shipment of Fateh-110 and Zolfaghar missiles, two short-range ballistic missiles capable of hitting targets at distances of 300 and 700 kilometers. Since Russia invaded the Ukraine in February, Moscow has deployed Iranian-made drones to hit civilian infrastructures and energy installations.

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While Israel has condemned Russian attacks against Ukraine and is said to share “basic intelligence” with Kyiv about Moscow’s use of Iranian-made Shahed “suicide” drones, it has declined to provide military aid to the war-torn country limiting its assistance to humanitarian aid. Israel seeks to avoid jeopardizing its ability to conduct operations in Syria’s skies against Iranian targets, which depend on coordination with Moscow.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has repeatedly criticised Israel for failing to send Kyiv anti-missile systems, such as the Iron Dome defense system, to help counter Russian attacks.

Commenting on the Post report, Ukraine’s ambassador to Israel Yevgen Korniychuk raised concerns about Iran’s intentions to sell more “lethal kamikaze drones and medium-range ballistic missiles” to Russia.

“Russia finally turned into a terrorist state and actually joined the “axis of evil”, which threatens not only Ukraine, but also the rest of the civilized world, of which Israel is a part,” stated Korniychuk. “What other persuasions, proofs, and arguments are needed for the Israeli authorities to make a logical and pragmatic decision regarding more active opposition to the formed “Russian-Iranian alliance” by providing Kyiv with relevant weapons?”

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