Ukraine issued a temporary ban on Wednesday against the entry of foreign nationals into the country, according to Hebrew media reports.
The announcement follows Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s statement just one day earlier, on Tuesday, that he will limit the entry of Israelis ahead of Rosh Hashanah next month.
The ban is apparently meant to thwarts tens of thousands of Jews from traveling to Uman ahead of Rosh Hashanah, an issue that has been subject to much controversy both in Israel and Ukraine in recent days.
There are reportedly about 2,000 Israelis already in Uman but the Ukrainian government has stated that large gatherings inside of Uman will be strictly prohibited.
The ban will be implemented until September 28. The government also extended lockdown restrictions until the end of October to stem the recent spike in coronavirus cases in the country.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky met with Ukrainian Rabbanim on Tuesday ahead of the Tishrei Chagim.
“Every year we receive the tens of thousands of chassidim who ascend to the tzion of Rav Nachman M’Breslov in Uman with honor and blessings, but this year, due to the infection rate, we cannot allow such a large amount of chassidim to come to Uman,” Zelensky said.
Later on Tuesday, Zelensky said he would limit the number of visitors from Israel “at Netanyahu’s request.”
Following fierce criticism of Netanyahu in Israeli media, a statement from the Prime Minister’s Officer denied that Netanyahu had made such a request: “The prime minister did not request a limit on the number of visitors to Uman. As was clarified in the joint meeting of Israel and Ukraine, which was published last week, the prime minister and the [Ukrainian] president urged [potential visitors] to refrain from traveling to Uman due to the infection rate, but noted and emphasized that whoever does decide to come to Uman must adhere to health regulations.”
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(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)
It’s not a problem. They are doing people and families a favor.
This situation is utterly ridiculous. The coming to Uman for Rosh Hashanah might be a nice thing, probably a bit more than that if one is a true chosid of Breslov. But it doesn’t rate anywhere close to the Torah obligations of the 613 mitzvos. The implied message in all this is that there is resistance to fulfilling a Torah mandate which would be tragic.
I know many people who go there every year. But when they have reasons why not to, they are able to acclimate to the minyanim where they live, and somehow fulfill the mitzvos of the Yom Tov. The frenzy, I believe, was never intended by Reb Nachman. I suggest that Reb Nachman would have been far more interested in every Yid being engrossed in the seriousness of teshuvah and coming closer to Hashem.
The picture shown by YWN does not exactly enhance the cause. Only ONE Rov with a face mask and no social distancing whatsoever. So who is right ?
Hi. I live in kiev all year. The situation with corona is not so simple. Lot of people are sick and lots of people dying. Rosh Hashanah in uman is a beautiful thing but it’s a big risk letting in thousands of people from places where corona is also bad. The president was very nice to The Rabonim he met this week. I really understand the government for closing the borders and hope everyone else also does. כתיבה וחתימה טובה to all!!!