Israeli captured by Russian troops in Ukraine

Dual Ukrainian-Israeli national said he was prevented from leaving country, forcibly conscripted to army and sent to battle without proper training.

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

A dual Israeli-Ukrainian citizen who was recently captured by Russian troops said Ukrainian authorities had blocked him from leaving the country and that he was sent to the battlefield without proper training or equipment.

Vladimir Kozolovsky, who was born in Ukraine but immigrated to Israel a number of years ago and holds Israeli nationality, was in his homeland at the time of the Russian invasion.

In a video filmed by Russian soldiers and sent to Channel 12 News, he explained that he had attempted to flee the embattled Eastern European nation with his wife, but that Ukrainian border guards refused to let him cross the border, citing a blanket ban on men of fighting age leaving the country.

Kozolovsky said that his wife and son were allowed to leave the country and fly to Israel, thanks to a special document he obtained from the Israeli consulate, but that Ukrainian authorities wouldn’t grant him permission to leave.

He said that he was forcibly conscripted to the army, where he was given minimal equipment, including an older model gun, without instructions on how to use it.

Kozlovsky was given a mission to transport Ukrainian soldiers, during which he came under heavy shelling and was detained by Russian forces.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry told Channel 12 News that it was “aware” of Kozlovsky’s situation.

A number of dual Israeli-Ukrainian nationals have traveled to Ukraine in order to take up arms against the Russian invasion, while thousands of Israelis in Ukraine fled the country in order to avoid the fighting.

In late February 2022, an Israeli father of two was shot by Ukrainian militants in western Ukraine.

Roman Brodsky, 42, was heading to the border with Moldova, from where he planned to return to Israel.

His father told Kan News that he was traveling in a convoy of five cars which failed to stop at a checkpoint set up by local Ukrainian militias.

The armed men likely “mistook my son for a Chechen” or other Russian fighter, and shot him multiple times, his father said.