April 07, 2007

Ukrainian President Not Going to Israel

From Ukrainian President Not Going to Israel. Here's why:

Israeli authorities have declined Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko's request to visit Israel for Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes Remembrance Day on April 16. The Israeli Foreign Ministry has asked Kiev several times to coordinate a time for an official visit, but the timeframe has shifted repeatedly. Two weeks ago, Yushchenko sent a request to visit during the observance. According to the Israeli newspaper Maariv, Yushchenko intended to use his visit to draw parallels between the Jewish Holocaust and the Ukrainian Holodomor, the famine of 1932-1933. Kiev holds that the artificial famine was an act of genocide against Ukraine by the USSR and is demanding international recognition of it. More than 60 countries have signed a document prepared by Ukraine confirming the genocide. Israel has not, out of a desire to maintain good relations with Russia.