(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
Around a thousand Ukrainians held a solidarity rally outside the Israeli Embassy in Kiev on Wednesday, waving flags and banners proclaiming “No to terrorism” and, “The Christians of Ukraine for Israel.”
A number of Jewish and non-Jewish organizations jointly organized the demonstration, which brought together Jewish tycoons and MPs such as Vadim Rabinovich, who runs the All-Ukrainian Jewish Congress, and Oleksandr Feldman, the founder of the Ukrainian Jewish Committee.
“Peaceful people are dying on the streets of Israel from the knife murderers and terrorists,” declared Rabinovich, according to local website newsnetwork.tv. “Many have come today because we in Ukraine have felt what terrorism is. We know what it is to lose our homes. We know what it is, when people are dying.
“You see today the shared representatives of different faiths. All these people hate terrorism,” he continued.
“I am very grateful to everyone who came. I think that Ukraine will always carry in its heart hatred of terrorism.”
Last year, Russia invaded and annexed the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine, and Moscow is currently backing armed separatists in their fight against government forces in the country’s east. Ukraine has declared the separatists to be terrorists while human rights organizations have blamed both sides for indiscriminately firing into civilian areas.
“In Israel, every day there are acts of terrorism, in which innocent people are killed. Every day they are killed only because they were Jews,” local Rabbi Reuven Azman told the crowd.
“Today, we are all together in favor of something to stop the terrorism.
Our voice – in support of Israel, which faces terrorism, like Ukraine,” he said.
Also on Wednesday, Tzvi Arieli, an Israeli citizen who formed a Jewish self-defense organization in Kiev during last year’s revolution, announced that another pro-Israel rally will be held in the city’s central Maidan Square on Sunday.