Ukraine slaps 50-year sanctions package on Iran amid latest drone strikes

    WORLD  30 May 2023 - 20:20

    After repeated attacks on the country by Russian forces using Iranian-made drones, Ukraine’s parliament — the Verkhovna Rada — approved 50-year sanctions against the Islamic Republic on May 29.

    The sanctions include a total ban on trade, movement of resources, direct flights, and withdrawal of capital by Iranians.

    It also stops a range of electronic payments between Ukraine and Iran.

    Investment in Iran and the transfer of intellectual property rights and technology were also banned by the measure.

    “The resolution synchronizes Ukrainian sanctions with the actions of the entire civilized world on the path to the complete isolation of Iran,” the parliament said in a statement, The Times of Israel reports.

    The sanctions were first proposed last week by Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council.

    “We will continue to act in all ways and means until we end the invasion of the Russian enemy army!” pledged Ukraine’s embassy in Israel in its announcement of the sanctions.

    The measures come days after a massive drone attack on Kyiv overnight Saturday, the largest since the invasion in February last year.

    Russia launched the “most massive attack” on the city with Iranian-made Shahed drones, said Serhii Popko, a senior Kyiv military official. The attack lasted more than five hours, with air defense reportedly shooting down more than 40 drones.

    A 41-year-old man was killed and a 35-year-old woman was hospitalized when debris fell on a seven-story nonresidential building and started a fire, Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said.

    Ukraine’s air force said that Saturday night was also record-breaking in terms of Shahed drone attacks across the country. Of the 54 drones launched, 52 were shot down by air defense systems.

    Russia launched another wave of attacks on Kyiv in the early hours of Monday using a combination of drones and cruise missiles. More than 40 air targets were brought down in what was the 15th nighttime attack on the capital in May, head of the Kyiv Military Administration Serhii Popko said in a Telegram update. Falling debris broke through the roof of a residential building in the Podlisk district but there were no immediate reports of casualties.

    Earlier this year, Foreign Minister Eli Cohen visited Ukraine and announced that Jerusalem and Kyiv had agreed to step up cooperation in a shared struggle against Iran.

    The cooperation will likely extend to intelligence sharing on Iran’s ballistic missile program, but Israel has given no indication that it will heed Kyiv’s request for weapons amid Jerusalem’s fear of alienating Russia, which controls the Syria skies used by the IDF to target Iranian proxies below.

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