Photo Credit: Ukrinform TV - YouTube screen grab
Ukraine President-elect Volodymyr Zelensky

Ukraine’s newly elected President Volodymyr Zelensky, who is Jewish, met on Monday with a delegation of chief rabbis serving in the country’s cities.

The rabbis, all Chabad-Lubavitch emissaries to the country, presented Zelensky, 42, with a Torah translated into Russian, and wished him success in his new position.


All told, they spent about an hour together, describing the history of Chabad-Lubavitch emissaries in the former Soviet Union and discussing the challenges of Jewish life in Ukraine.

Included among the members of the delegation meeting with the president-elect were: Chief Rabbi of Kiev Moshe Asman; Rabbi Shmuel Kaminetzsky of Dniepr; Rabbi Moshe Moskovitz of Kharkov; Rabbi Avraham Wolff of Odessa; Rabbi Shlomo Wilhelm of Zhitomir; and Rabbi Pinchus Vishetzkiy of Donetzk, the fifth largest city in Ukraine. Donetzk has also been the site of fighting between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian and DPR forces.

Zelensky will take office at the beginning of June, the first Jew to do so in the history of the nation.


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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.