Ukraine making efforts to evacuate its citizens from Gaza, Israel: Zelenskyy

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Ukraine is working to evacuate nearly 260 of its citizens from Gaza and to fly other Ukrainians out of Israel, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in his nightly address on Sunday.

Ukraine’s embassy in Israel said on social media on Saturday that 207 Ukrainian citizens, including 63 children, were evacuated from Tel Aviv to Romania on Saturday and that another flight would take 155 people to Romania on Sunday.

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Many countries are working to get their citizens out of Israel and Gaza and send in humanitarian aid to civilians.

Ukrainian human rights ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets said three parties would have to approve the departure of Ukrainians from Gaza, complicating the process.

“The Palestinians need to release all Ukrainian citizens, Egypt to accept them, and Israel should not conduct any operation at this time, so that the crossing point would be safe,” he said in remarks televised on Sunday.

Egypt says its side of the Rafah crossing that connects Sinai with the Gaza Strip remains open, though traffic has been halted for several days due to Israeli bombardments on the Palestinian side of the border. Israel’s military spokesperson said on Saturday that the border remains closed and any crossing into Egypt needed to be coordinated with Israel.

Ukraine’s foreign ministry protested to Israel after Ukrainian citizens were not allowed to evacuate from Gaza on Saturday.

Zelenskyy has condemned the attacks by Hamas on Israel, calling for world solidarity with Israel.

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