In Brief: Israeli field hospital opened as refugee numbers climb

Israel field hospital in Ukraine > Screen grab/ MASHAV Israel

An Israeli field hospital officially opened in the west Ukranian town of Mostyska this week after the arrival in recent days of 17 tons of equipment and a 60-strong Israeli medical team.

The hospital includes a pediatric ward, a maternity ward, an emergency room, and a telemedicine facility. Its staff are drawn from the Sheba Medical Centre and the Schneider Children’s Hospital.

The hospital is named “Kochav Meir” (“Shining Star”), after the Kyiv-born former Israeli prime minister Golda Meir. Meir was the founder of the Foreign Ministry’s Agency for International Development Cooperation aid programme, which is leading the field hospital project.

The field hospital is part of a tranche of humanitarian aid being delivered to Ukraine by Israel.

It opened hours after thousands of Israelis gathered in Tel Aviv’s Habima Square on Sunday evening to watch President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s address to the Knesset. He urged Israel to send arms to Ukraine and appeared to equate the Russian invasion to the Holocaust.

After also appearing to criticise Naftali Bennett’s efforts to mediate between Russia and Ukraine, Zelensky used his nightly video address to praise the prime minister. “The prime minister of Israel … is trying to find a way of holding talks, and we are grateful for this,” the president said. He also repeated his previous calls for peace talks in Jerusalem, saying: “That’s the right place to find peace.”

Zelensky’s speech came as the number of Ukranian refugees arriving in Israel passed the 4,000 mark. The Jewish Agency expects tens of thousands of people from Ukraine, Belarus and Russia to immigrate to Israel in the near future, with the government estimating the figure may reach 100,000.
Read full story