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Ombudsman arrives in Egypt to help facilitate evacuation of Ukrainians from Gaza

by Nate Ostiller October 14, 2023 9:37 PM 2 min read
Aftermath of Israeli strikes on Gaza on Oct. 10, 2023, in retaliation to Hamas terrorist attacks against Israel. (Ashraf Amra/Anadolu via Getty Images)
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Ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets flew to Egypt to assist in the process of evacuating Ukrainian citizens from besieged Gaza, according to a Facebook post on Oct. 14.

Lubinets wrote that as of the time of this publication, the situation in Gaza is critical and that 243 Ukrainian citizens, mostly women and children, urgently need to be evacuated.

However, the Rafah border crossing between Egypt and Gaza is currently blocked, so Lubinets said he was meeting with relevant Egyptian counterparts to help find a safe passage out for the Ukrainians stuck inside.

Earlier on Oct. 14, it was reported that a deal had been struck between Israel, Egypt, and the U.S. to allow for the evacuation of foreigners from Gaza via the Rafah crossing. Egyptian officials quoted by the Times of Israel said they had received “instructions” to reopen the Rafah border crossing on the afternoon of Oct. 14 for foreigners coming from Gaza.

The deal did not include provisions for any of the foreign hostages held by Hamas.

On Oct. 13, Ukraine's Ambassador to Israel Yevhen Korniichuk said that Ukrainian citizens may be among those taken hostage by Hamas, but stressed that he had not received any concrete evidence yet to confirm that.

Ukraine's embassy in Israel confirmed that Hamas' Oct. 7 attack had killed 12 Ukrainians, and injured another nine, with varying levels of severity. Eight other Ukrainians were still missing.

At least 250 Ukrainian citizens will be evacuated from Israel "in the coming days," Yevhen Korniichuk, Ukraine's ambassador to Israel, told news outlet ZN.ua on Oct. 14.

The Palestinian armed militant group Hamas launched an attack of unprecedented scale on Israel on Oct. 7, using missiles and soldiers who infiltrated into Israeli territory. Thousands of Israelis and Palestinians, as well as some foreigners, have been killed in the ensuing fighting.

‘A wave of terror:’ Hamas attack brings back haunting memories of war for Ukrainians in Israel
Stefania Stavytska woke up on Oct. 7. in the Israeli port city of Jaffa with a queasy feeling of déjà-vu. The 25-year-old video producer thought she had left the sounds of sirens behind when she left Kyiv in March 2022, at the start of Russia’s full-scale invasion. Instead, she
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