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Israeli and Jewish groups increase humanitarian aid, medical teams to serve Ukrainians

The Foreign Ministry confirmed it also helped their friends get to Lebanon and Syria – two nations with whom Israel is technically at war

Members of the United Hatzalah rescue team at Ben-Gurion International Airport near Tel Aviv, Feb. 26, 2022. (Photo: United Hatzalah)

Despite its tiny size, the Jewish state is frequently among the first nations to provide humanitarian aid anywhere in the world – and the crisis in Ukraine is no different. 

“In the next two days, a plane will reach Ukraine from Israel with 100 tons of humanitarian equipment for civilians who are also in the battle zone, and those who are trying to leave... who are outside of their homes in cold winter weather,” Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said. 

Israel is also sending a team of 15 medical professionals to Moldova to assist Ukrainian refugees and an additional 30 medical crew members will join them later. The Israeli humanitarian aid operation for Ukraine is led by United Hatzalah, a volunteer Israeli medical organization. 

David Crispil, the delegation commander of the Israeli humanitarian aid mission, outlined the plans for the medical operation. 

“We are leaving for Romania, and from there we will arrive by car to Chișinău,” the capital of Moldova, said Crispil. “There we will connect with Israel Ambassador Joel Leon and representatives of the Jewish community, and along with them we will refine our mission.” 

Sheba Beyond, an organization that is affiliated with the internationally renowned Israeli Sheba Medical Center, is providing the technical equipment needed for the medical mission and sent a representative as part of the United Hatzalah operation. 

Dr. Galia Barkai, director of Sheba Beyond, stressed the organization’s advanced medical capabilities and experience. 

“We have the ability to provide remote assistance and use advanced technologies to bring the high quality of Sheba Medical Center doctors to areas that are experiencing medical crises,” Barkai stated. “The advanced equipment in the field will be connected online to Sheba’s computers so that we can guide, advise, and assist the members of the delegation in their medical work.”

Meanwhile, in another twist of humanitarian aid, Israeli authorities assisted citizens of nations with which it has no relations in getting out of Ukraine and back to their countries. 

While helping about 100 Israelis safely reach the Moldovan border – mostly Arab-Israelis students studying in Ukraine – the Foreign Ministry confirmed that it also helped their friends get to Lebanon and Syria – two nations with whom Israel is technically at war.

Jewish organizations are working together with the Israeli government in providing humanitarian aid to assist Jews in Ukraine. The Jewish Federations of North America (JFNSA) have initiated a $20 million emergency campaign on behalf of needy Jewish individuals in Ukraine. 

Mark Wilf, chair of the Board of Trustees of JFNSA, said his organization was committed to the well-being of Jewish communities around the world. 

“Jewish Federations are hard at work, day after day, year after year, in times of crisis and calm, to build flourishing Jewish communities. And when an emergency erupts, we are positioned to meet the challenges of Jewish people and communities around the world,” Wilf said.

The Inbar & Marius Nacht Family Foundation, established by Israeli entrepreneur Marius Nacht, recently transferred hundreds of thousands of dollars earmarked to assist the neighboring Moldovan Jewish community that is expected to be impacted by the refugee crisis in Ukraine. 

Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians have already become refugees and fears are growing that a protracted war could lead to the worst refugee crisis Europe has seen in many years. 

“We are witnessing what could become the largest humanitarian crisis on our European continent in many, many years," the European Union’s Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarcic told the media. “Currently, the expected number of displaced Ukrainians is over 7 million people.”

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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