Ukraine’s situation warrants a coordinated international response similar to that received by Israel in the wake of Iranian drone and missile strikes, some Czech officials who expressed support for Israel said.

Iran attacked Israel with more than 300 drones and missiles on Saturday, but 99% of them were intercepted by Israeli forces backed by allies, official Israeli reports said. According to Israeli officials, the United States, Britain, Jordan and France were involved in defending the country.

The escalation followed Israel’s attack on the Iranian embassy in Syria, resulting in the death of a senior Iranian general.

“Czechia firmly condemns the destabilising behaviour of Iran and its proxies who decided to attack Israel. We reiterate the Israeli right to self-defence. Iran’s long term aggressive behavior is preventing the Middle East region to live in peace and security,” the Foreign Ministry said in reaction to the attack.

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However, some Czech politicians believe Ukraine, facing similar attacks from Russia, should receive the same kind of protection.

“The Ayatollah’s overnight attack on Israel was successfully repelled thanks to a swift international response and a willingness to defend airspace. It is a pity that we do not defend the airspace over Ukraine with the same vigour…,” Czech European Affairs Minister Martin Dvořák (STAN) posted on X.

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Other politicians associated with the centrist STAN party — the coalition party of the government — echoed these sentiments.

“Ukraine deserves the same forceful defence that Israel rightly received from its allies last night,” Danuše Nerudová, the leading candidate of STAN for European elections, wrote on X.

Czech MEP Markéta Gregorová (Pirates, Greens), who also took to social media, joined the call for greater protection of Ukraine.

“I totally condemn Iran’s attack on Israel,” Gregorová said, adding, “In light of Scholz’s promise yesterday to supply Ukraine with more Patriots, I believe that the West will finally help build air defences that also protect Ukrainian civilians.” This was about German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s recent decision to send additional Patriot air defence systems and missiles to Ukraine.

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Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala stressed that it is necessary to maintain the aid to Ukraine from the United States. “The US support for Ukraine is absolutely essential,” Fiala said on Sunday, just before leaving for the US to meet with President Joe Biden and US Congress representatives.

Republican House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA-01) has promised that because of Iran’s retaliatory attack on Israel, the House will proceed with a vote on aid to Israel later this week. So far, Republicans have rejected it because the aid to Israel is in the same package as aid to Ukraine or Taiwan.

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