Netanyahu Says He'd Consider Arming Ukraine

Former Israeli prime minister could be returned to office next month
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 21, 2022 5:15 PM CDT
Netanyahu Says He'd Consider Arming Ukraine
A man walks behind a Likud party election campaign banner depicting its leader, former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in Tel Aviv on Thursday.   (AP Photo/Oded Balilty)

Concerned about its relationship with Russia, Israel has been reluctant to become deeply involved in helping Ukraine fight off the invasion. That could change if Benjamin Netanyahu is restored to power in upcoming elections, the former prime minister told USA Today. He noted that the current government has received criticism for not sending weapons to Ukraine. "I was asked about that recently," Netanyahu, now the opposition leader, said in the interview. "And I said I'll look into it when I got into office."

It's become more complicated for Israel to refuse Ukraine weapons, now that Iran is sending attack drones and missiles to Russia for use in the war. A White House spokesman said the Defense Department is working with allies to try to get them to supply weapons to Ukraine, per USA Today, while acknowledging they have to factor in their own security needs. "Israel should have the right to speak to what they're willing to do or not willing to do without judgment," John Kirby said. Netanyahu also said he might be asked to mediate between Ukraine and Russia, as he was shortly after the invasion, if he's elected next month. (More Russia-Ukraine war stories.)

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