Holocaust remembrance organizations in Israel are condemning a Russian attack that inflicted damage to the Babi Yar Holocaust memorial. Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid issued a statement denouncing the incident, and said Israel would help repair any damage. “We are calling for the preservation and respect for this sacred site,” he said in a tweet that did not mention Russia by name. The memorial is the site of a massacre of more than 33,000 Jews by Nazi Germany in 1941. It is located on the outskirts of Kyiv and adjacent to the city’s TV tower, where Ukrainian authorities said a Russian attack killed five people, the AP reports. A TV control room and power substation were hit, and at least some Ukrainian channels briefly stopped broadcasting, officials said.
A spokesman for the memorial said that damage was caused to the Jewish cemetery at the site, but that assessing the full extent of the damage would have to wait until daylight. The Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial’s chairman, Natan Sharansky, said that Russian President Vladimir Putin "seeks to distort and manipulate the Holocaust to justify an illegal invasion of a sovereign democratic country is utterly abhorrent. It is symbolic that he starts attacking Kyiv by bombing the site of the Babyn Yar, the biggest of Nazi massacres." Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center in Jerusalem, expressed "vehement condemnation" and called on the international community to take action "to safeguard civilian lives as well as these historical sites."
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