image Photo: Ariel Hermoni (IMoD)

Gantz briefs EU on Israeli policy

The update focused on Jerusalem’s assistance to Kyiv. 

By Erin Viner

Israel supports and stands with Ukraine, NATO and the West – this is something we have said in the past and repeat today,” and “we will continue to support Ukraine within our limitations, as we have done in the past,” Defense Minister Benny Gantz told the European Union Ambassadors.

Gantz’ remarks follow repeated Ukrainian calls on Israel to deliver its most sophisticated aerial defense systems.

Israel has long provided humanitarian aid – including the establishment of a field hospital, provision of life-saving defensive equipment and negotiating safe refuge for war refugees. The Jewish State also offered on multiple occasions to mediate an end to the conflict.

An additional aid package currently under review would not include weapon systems “due to a variety of operational considerations,” said Jerusalem’s top defense official, but it will include a smart missile defense alert system similar to that used by Israel.

“We called on Ukraine to give us information that would allow us to help build and provide a smart alert system against aerial and other threats,” Gantz said, explaining that, “This system will have advantages in saving civilian lives and concentrating the alerts and sirens in relevant areas.”

Israel is also closely following Iran’s involvement in war in Ukraine with the provision of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs, drones) to Russian forces, said Lieutenant General (Ret.) Gantz, expressing concern over the potential delivery of additional advanced systems.

“The Iranians lie methodically about selling this equipment” continuously to its terrorist proxies in “Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen and additional places,” he said.

“Of course, Iran also lies about the nuclear program – they continue their activities in terms of enrichment, development, and building protected areas for their nuclear capacities,” stressed the Israeli defense chief. While calling for increased international cooperation including the establishment of “an intelligence coalition” and creation of “a credible military threat,” he underscored that “at the same time, Israel will continue developing and maintaining its capabilities.

The briefing was attended by the Director of the Policy and POL-MIL Bureau Brigadier General (Res.) Dror Shalom and the and Military Secretary Brigadier General Yaki Dolf..

Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid was briefed on the latest developments in Ukraine during a telephone call last night with the country’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba.

During the conversation, the Prime Minister emphasized his deep concern about the military ties between Iran and Russia, and emphasized that Israel stands with the Ukrainian people.

Kyiv’s top diplomat Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kuleba confirmed that he had spoken to Israeli Prime Minister Lapid, and revealed that the two also discussed in detail Kyiv’s request for air and missile defense systems and technology.

“I informed him (of the) unspeakable suffering, loss of life, and destruction caused by Russian missiles and Iranian-made drones,” Minister Kuleba wrote on Twitter.