Medvedev: Israel arms shipments to Ukraine will destroy relationship with Russia

"If they are supplied with weapons, then it is time for Israel to declare Bandera and Shukhevych their heroes."

Deputy Chairman of Russia's Security Council Dmitry Medvedev gives an interview at the Gorki state residence outside Moscow, Russia, January 25, 2022. (photo credit: SPUTNIK/YULIA ZYRYANOVA/POOL VIA REUTERS)
Deputy Chairman of Russia's Security Council Dmitry Medvedev gives an interview at the Gorki state residence outside Moscow, Russia, January 25, 2022.
(photo credit: SPUTNIK/YULIA ZYRYANOVA/POOL VIA REUTERS)

Israel will “destroy” relations with Russia if it sells weapons to Ukraine, former Russian president Dmitry Medvedev warned on Monday.

“It looks like Israel is going to provide arms to the regime in Kyiv,” Medvedev, currently deputy chairman of Moscow’s national security council, wrote on his Telegram channel. “A very reckless move. It will destroy government relations between our countries.”

"It will destroy all interstate relations between our countries."

Former president of Russia Dmitry Medvedev

Israel has not announced any change of policy regarding the war in Ukraine.

Medvedev may have been responding to a tweet by Diaspora Minister Nachman Shai.

“This morning it was reported that Iran is transferring ballistic missiles to Russia,” Shai said on Sunday. “There is no longer any doubt where Israel should stand in this bloody conflict. The time has come for Ukraine to receive military aid as well, just as the USA and NATO countries provide.”

Jerusalem expressed opposition to Russia’s invasion from the start and voted against it in the UN while providing only humanitarian aid to Ukraine.

The reasoning is partly because of the deconfliction mechanism between Israel and Russia, which allows Israel to attack Iranian targets in Syria where the Russian military has a major presence, and partly out of a concern for the well-being of Russian and Ukrainian Jews.

Background

Medvedev also wrote that “the Banderists were Nazis and remained so,” calling to “look at the symbolism of their modern henchmen.”

“If they are supplied with weapons, then it is time for Israel to declare Bandera and Shukhevych their heroes.”

Stepan Bandera was the leader of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, which collaborated with the Nazis in World War II, killing thousands of Jews and Poles.

Portrait of UPA leader Stepan Bandera (left) at a rally marking the anniversary of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), which fought both Nazi and Soviet forces in World War II [File] (credit: REUTERS)Portrait of UPA leader Stepan Bandera (left) at a rally marking the anniversary of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), which fought both Nazi and Soviet forces in World War II [File] (credit: REUTERS)

He was posthumously awarded the Hero of Ukraine award in 2010 by then-Ukrainian president Viktor Yushchenko, a move condemned by foreign nations and Jewish groups worldwide.

Roman-Taras Yosypovych Shukhevych worked for Bandera and was involved in murdering and expelling the Polish population of Volhynia and Eastern Galicia.

Russia’s leadership has repeatedly compared Ukraine to the Nazis.

Russia’s Foreign Ministry said in May that Israel supports neo-Nazis in Ukraine, soon after Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov claimed that Adolf Hitler had Jewish origins, sparking an uproar in Israel and a condemnation from Prime Minister Yair Lapid, then foreign minister.