Official suggests US comfortable with Israel refusing military aid to Ukraine

Jacob Magid is The Times of Israel's US correspondent based in New York

JEDDAH — A senior Biden administration official suggests that the US is comfortable with Israel refusing to offer military aid to Ukraine.

“We encourage nations to support Ukraine in the best way they see fit,” the official says, briefing several reporters.

The US official says that for some countries that means providing only humanitarian aid and for others it means providing security assistance as well.

“Each nation has to decide on its own,” they say.

Israel has thus far refused to offer Ukraine offensive military equipment due to fears of burning a bridge with Russia, whose airspace it operates from in Syria to target Iranian proxies.

But while the US previously publicly called on Israel to ensure it does not become a haven for Russian oligarchs to evade sanctions, the Biden administration official refrains from issuing such a warning regarding military aid.

Israel has provided millions in humanitarian assistance, operated a field hospital to treat refugees and more recently began sending non-offensive military equipment such as helmets and flak jackets.

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