Ukraine blasts Israel, Russia discusses and suggests ‘policy change’ amid Netanyahu’s new administration

Ukraine’s ambassador to Israel condemned calls this week between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Israel’s new diplomat Eli Cohen, who was appointed foreign minister late last month, indicating that there has been a shift in policy between Moscow and Jerusalem.

“The Israeli foreign minister has not spoken to Lavrov since the start of the war,” Ukrainian Ambassador Yevgen Korniychuk told The Times of Israel on Tuesday referring to former Foreign Minister Yair Lapid.

But the election of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the appointment of a right-wing cabinet mean there will be changes not only in Israel, but also in the way it engages with its international partners.

Russian President Vladimir Putin greets Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as they meet on January 30, 2020 in Moscow.
(Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images)


Korniychuk said Israel was “unique in terms of partners” and noted that although humanitarian aid had been provided to Kyiv, Jerusalem remained “silent” when it condemned Russia’s war in Ukraine, including attacks on civilian targets.

“Unfortunately, we have not come under fire for the massive shelling of our civilians in recent months,” he added, according to Israeli media.

Korniychuk said Israel’s position on the war was “vague,” but according to an Israeli official who spoke after the Lavrov-Cohen conversation, “there has been no change in Israeli policy.” ‘Israel'”.

Cohen came under international fire this week in his first speech as Israel’s foreign minister when he addressed the war in Ukraine, saying, “As far as the Russia-Ukraine issue is concerned, we will do one thing for sure – in public – we will talk less. “

Prominent proponents of aid to Ukraine, such as Senator Lindsey Graham, RS.C., dismissed Cohen’s comments and said, “The idea that Israel should talk less about Russia’s criminal invasion of Ukraine is somewhat disconcerting.”

“I hope Mr Cohen understands that when he spoke to Lavrov in Russia, he was speaking to representatives of war criminal regimes who commit war crimes on an industrial scale every day,” he added.

Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen speaks during a news conference in Jerusalem on January 2, 2023.
(Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs document/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)


Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba reportedly did not speak to his new Israeli counterpart, although Netanyahu has spoken to Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Netanyahu of the election campaign suggested that under his leadership Israel could start supplying Kyiv with arms, but Zelenskyy appeared unconvinced after recent calls with the six-term prime minister.

According to an Axios report last week, Netanyahua telephoned Zelenskyy ahead of a UN General Assembly vote on a resolution asking the International Court of Justice to provide a legal opinion on the consequences of Israel’s occupation of Palestinian lands as defined by pre-1967 borders. agreed under the United Nations

Netanyahu reportedly asked Zelensky to either vote against the resolution, which was approved by 87 countries while 24 countries voted against and 53 countries abstained, or abstain from voting.

Zelenskyy stepped back and asked whether Israel would provide air support against the Russian attack, a proposition the Israeli leadership is reportedly considering.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy attends a meeting with military officials during his visit to the war-torn Mykolaiv region on June 18, 2022.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy attends a meeting with military officials during his visit to the war-torn Mykolaiv region on June 18, 2022.
(Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP)


Zelenskyy apparently disliked the evasive response and ordered Ukrainian diplomats for the UN not to attend the vote – a move that eluded Netanyahu’s wishes.

The Israeli leader was reportedly disappointed by the decision.

Fox News could not immediately reach Israel’s Foreign Ministry for comment.

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