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Zelensky holds phone call with Netanyahu on visa-free travel

by Elsa Court and The Kyiv Independent news desk September 7, 2023 10:47 PM 2 min read
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky holds a phone call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sept. 7, 2023. (Volodymyr Zelensky / Telegram)
This audio is created with AI assistance

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President Volodymyr Zelensky said he and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had a phone call on Sept. 7.

One issue raised during the call was increasing the "number of refusals for Ukrainian citizens to enter Israel under the visa-free regime," according to Zelensky.

Reports emerged over the summer that around 10% of Ukrainians are denied entry to Israel, despite the two countries having a visa-free regime with each other.

Ukraine’s Ambassador to Israel Yevhen Korniichuk said on Aug. 21 that Kyiv was considering suspending the visa-free travel regime in response.

Zelensky also said that they discussed the security situation relating to the expected arrival of pilgrims to Uman in Cherkasy Oblast for Rosh Hashanah, Jewish New Year.

A major pilgrimage site for Hasidic Jews is located in Uman and many pilgrims are expected to arrive, despite the "continuation of Russian terror," Zelensky said.

An apartment building in Uman, which is in central Ukraine, was hit by a Russian strike in April.

The attack killed at least 23 people, including five children.

Netanyahu said the the phone call also covered "continuing Israeli aid to Ukraine, including to refugees from Ukraine staying in Israel," as well as aid in the devlelopemnt of civil air defense systems.

"It is important that Israel supports the territorial integrity and sovereignty of our state," Zelensky said on Telegram.

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