Deputy Internal Minister Tetyana Kovalchuk and Israeli Ambassador to Ukraine Joel Lion discussed solutions of issues related to the implementation of the Agreement for the exemption of visa requirements for people who use internal or official passports of Ukraine and Israel, as the press office of the Internal Ministry reported.
“Israeli Government is determined to protect our borders from illegal migrants,” Lion said, having noted that Ukrainian law enforcers often decide not to let Israeli citizens to Ukraine.
Kovalchuk stressed the aim of both of the sides to narrow down a significant number of denials of entry to Israel for Ukrainians and intolerant attitude to our compatriots from the representatives of the Israeli authorities at Ben Gurion airport.
The Ambassador has pledged willingness of the Israeli side to continue seeking for mutually acceptable adequate solutions to correct the situation.
Lion passed a letter to Internal Minister of Ukraine Arsen Avakov from the his Israeli colleague Aryeh Deri with an invitation to visit Jerusalem any time soon to continue the dialogue about visa-free regime launched in 2017.
96 Israeli citizens were banned from entering Ukraine since the beginning of the year. At the same time, about 500 Ukrainians were banned from entering Israel.
Earlier, the Israeli Embassy in Kyiv replied to the information request by the correspondent of 112.ua news agency. The authority has cleared its position on the recent incidents with entry refusals for Israeli citizens in Ukrainian airport, namely Boryspil international airport.
'We are concerned about the situation at the airport. According to the Israeli Population and Immigration Authority, while there has been an increase of Ukrainian tourists to Israel since the establishment of the visa-free regime, there has been no increase in the number of Ukrainian citizens refused to enter Israel in the past 3 years. We work together with the Ukrainian authorities in order to diffuse this crisis'.
'The reason, most often, is that some of them could not confirm the goal of their visit; some don't have the return tickets or don't know where they would live', he said.