Photo Credit: Just Click's with a Camera
This Kiev apartment building was hit by a Russian missile on February 26, 2022.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry has confirmed that 37-year-old Roman Brodsky, an Israeli Jewish husband and father, was killed Monday evening near Kiev by Ukrainian soldiers while attempting to flee the country.

It was originally believed that Brodsky was killed in an attack by Russian forces.


“The Foreign Ministry confirms that an Israeli citizen was killed in Ukraine while he was part of a convoy of vehicles on their way to the border with Moldova,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement Monday night.

“His vehicle came under fire and he was killed,” the statement said. “The director of the Department of Israelis Abroad spoke with his wife, who is currently in Ukraine with the deceased’s children,” the statement said.

“His parents, who live in Israel, received the difficult message. The Foreign Ministry wishes to express its sincere condolences to the family in this difficult time and will continue to assist the family as much as possible.”

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said in response to the killing that he was “saddened” to hear the news of Brodsky’s death. “On behalf of all Israeli citizens, I would like to send condolences to the late Roman’s wife, children and family in Israel and Ukraine. We continue to do everything we can to help Israelis return home.”

Israeli Hostage Being Held by Russian Navy
In addition, an Israeli was taken hostage aboard a Ukrainian ship, the diplomatic source confirmed to The Jerusalem Post.

The Israeli hostage is a sailor who was on board a Ukrainian cargo vessel that was seized by the Russian Navy in the Black Sea this weekend, his brother told Ynet on Monday.

Yuri Shvidky, a 51-year-old seaman and father of two, was aboard the Princess Nicole when it was seized on Saturday by Russians in the territorial waters of Romania, according to Shvidky’s brother Semion. The long-time seaman made aliyah in 2005 and holds dual Israeli-Ukrainian citizenship.

“My brother texted us that he has been detained by the Russians, that he was taken to land, and that he has no clue where he is. He hasn’t written to us since,” Shvidky told Ynet.

The captured vessel was reportedly towed to the port of Sevastopol in the Crimean Peninsula.

Ceasefire Talks Begin in Belarus
Negotiations between Ukraine and Russia began Monday in Belarus. After several hours, the delegations from the two countries returned to their nations’ capitals for consultations.

Another meeting is expected in two days to continue the talks.

Shortly after the talks ended, huge explosions were heard in the Ukrainian’s capital and surrounds, with residents reporting they were the “strongest explosions” hear in Kiev thus far.

US Escalates Sanctions on Russia
The United States Treasury Dept. announced Monday that it has frozen the assets of Russia’s Central Bank held in the US, as talks begin in Belarus between delegations from Moscow and Kiev.

The US also imposed sanctions on the Russian Direct Investment Fund.

“The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) has prohibited any U.S. person from conducting any transaction involving the Central Bank of the Russian Federation, the National Wealth Fund of the Russian Federation, or the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced in a statement.

“In addition, OFAC imposed blocking sanctions on the Russian Direct Investment Fund, a known slush fund for President Putin and his inner circle, two of its subsidiaries, and CEO Kirill Dmitriev.

“We took today’s actions to impair Russia’s ability to use its international reserves in ways that undermine the impact of our sanctions, as well as to prevent Russia from accessing its wealth fund for use in its ongoing war against Ukraine,” Blinken said. “We share with our partners and allies unity of purpose, resolve, and determination to hold Russia to account for its aggression, particularly those responsible for this war of choice.”

Shell Oil, BP Pull Out of Russia
Shell Oil company announced late Monday that it is pulling out of its joint ventures with Russia’s Gazprom firm and related entities in response to the invasion of Ukraine.

Shell will also withdraw its 27.5 percent stake in the Sakhalin-II liquified natural gas facility, as well as its 50 percent stake in the Salym Petroleum Development and the Gydan energy project.

In addition, the company said it would end its involvement in the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project which was to transport natural gas from Russia to Germany and the rest of Europe. Certification of the project was halted by Germany in the first days of the invasion.

“We are shocked by the loss of life in Ukraine, which we deplore, resulting from a senseless act of military aggression which threatens European security,” said Shell CEO Ben van Beurden.

One day earlier, BP had announced its plans to divest from its 20 percent stake in Russia’s Rosneft company.

Norway’s Equinor firm also said it is beginning to divest from hits holdings in Russia.

Switzerland Imposes Sanctions on Russia
Switzerland announced Monday that it, too, would freeze Russian financial assets in its country, abandoning its tradition of neutrality, according to a report by The New York Times.

Swiss President Ignazio Cassis said after a meeting with the country’s Federal Council that the assets of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov would all be frozen in addition to those of the 367 individuals sanctioned last week by the European Union.

This is the first time since the start of the invasion that Switzerland has decided to join the fight against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Not Only Financial Sanctions
FIFA and UEFA have both suspended the Russian soccer team from all international tournaments, including from its European World Cup playoff semi-final against Poland on March 24, according to The Athletic.

Russia’s football (soccer) clubs were also suspended from European competition by UEFA.

“Following the initial decisions adopted by the FIFA Council and the UEFA Executive Committee, which envisaged the adoption of additional measures, FIFA and UEFA have today decided together that all Russian teams, whether national representative teams or club teams, shall be suspended from participation in both FIFA and UEFA competitions until further notice,” said a statement from FIFA and UEFA.

“Football is fully united here and in full solidarity with all the people affected in Ukraine. Both presidents hope that the situation in Ukraine will improve significantly and rapidly so that football can again be a vector for unity and peace amongst people.”

Poland, Sweden and the Czech Republic all said they would refuse to play against any Russian team.

In addition, the International Olympic Committee said it would urge organizers of major sporting events to “not invite or allow the participation” of athletes from Russia and Belarus.

The 27-member European Union and Canada announced Sunday their nations had closed their airspace to all Russian aircraft, including those of Russian oligarchs.

In response, Russia announced Monday that will close its airspace to 36 countries, including much of Europe and Canada.

This past weekend, Russia’s president ordered troops operating his nation’s nuclear weapons to move to a “special regime of duty.”

Belarus Joining the War?
A referendum in neighboring Belarus on Sunday approved a new constitution abandoning the country’s non-nuclear status, thus allowing it to potentially host Russia’s nuclear arsenal.

A US official quoted by The Washington Post said, “It’s very clear that Minsk (the capital of Belarus) is now an extension of the Kremlin.”

A few hours earlier, Ukraine’s state security service officially reported that a rocket attack on Zhitomir Airport, about 93 miles west of Kiev was launched from Belarus’ territory, Britain’s Daily Mail reported.

Ukraine’s intelligence service also reportedly learned that special ops Belarusian troops were spotted loading up planes for an air strike on Kiev, according to the report.

Israel Sends Humanitarian Aid
The State of Israel said it is sending three plane loads of humanitarian supplies to Ukraine including thousands of coats, blankets and sleeping bags, tents, medical equipment and water purification equipment.

Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid also announced Monday that Israel will cosponsor and vote in favor of a UN resolution condemning the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Dozens were killed in a Russian rocket attack earlier in the day in Kharkiv, the country’s second-largest city, Ukraine said.

Ukraine officials say at least 352 civilians have died so far as a result of the Russian invasion, including 14 children.

More than half a million refugees have fled the invasion by Russian forces since the start of the invasion.


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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.