Some 500 Israelis fled Ukraine Thursday, thousands more remain – ministry

Lazar Berman is The Times of Israel's diplomatic reporter

Around 500 Israelis evacuated Ukraine by land Thursday, the Foreign Ministry says in a statement. Some of those leaving did so on three buses from Lviv to Poland, organized by the embassy staff currently stationed in Lviv.

According to the ministry, its staff in Lviv is in touch with thousands of Israelis in Ukraine and is giving them instructions by phone on how to reach the western land border crossings, where Israeli diplomats from neighboring countries are stationed.

In the last two weeks, more than 8,880 people in Ukraine registered with the embassy there. The number includes 5,840 Israeli citizens and more than 3,000 close family members who do not have citizenship.

Israel urged its citizens in the country to leave for several weeks before Thursday’s Russian onslaught began.

Israelis leaving Ukraine for Israel, even if traveling through a third country, do not have to undergo a PCR test for COVID-19 before flying.

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