On Thursday, May 5, the Russian president apologized to Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett for the remarks of head of diplomacy Sergei Lavrov, saying that Adolf Hitler was “Jewish blood”.
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday apologized to Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett for comments by his Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, claiming Adolf Hitler had “Jewish blood,” according to a statement from Naftali Bennett’s office.
“The prime minister accepted President Putin’s apology for Lavrov’s comments and thanked him for clarifying his position on the Jewish people and the memory of the Holocaust,” Naftali Bennett’s office said.
In a press release published by the Kremlin on Thursday, announcing a phone call between M. Putin and Bennett, there was no mention of an apology from the Russian president, who decided to invade Ukraine on February 24. “Zelensky makes this argument: How could Nazism exist (in Ukraine) if he himself was a Jew. I may be wrong, but Hitler also had Jewish blood,” said Ukrainian President Volodymyr Volodymyr.
This claim written by the Russian Foreign Ministry, which refers to rumors that historians regularly deny, angered Israel. The Jewish state summoned the Russian ambassador on Monday for “clarifications”. “There is no war comparable to the Holocaust (…) The use of the genocide of the Jews as a political tool must stop immediately,” Naftali Bennett declared at the beginning of the week, while his foreign minister, Yair Lapid, denounced the “scandalous” statements, an unforgivable historical error. .
Germany, the United States and Ukraine also denounced the allegations of Sergei Lavrov, whose invasion of Moscow was justified by the need to “discredit” the country.
As for how, Vladimir Putin’s apologies to Israel are not enough. “I insist that anti-Semitism has existed among the Russian elite for a long time. The only way for Foreign Minister Lavrov to get out of it is to publicly apologize to Jews everywhere.” This was stated by the head of Ukrainian diplomacy on Twitter. Dmytro Koleba.
Israeli Foreign Minister Tweet embed I am angry at Foreign Minister Lavrov’s anti-Semitic statements. She asserted that anti-Semitism has a long track record among Russian elites. The only way for Foreign Minister Lavrov is to make a public apology to Jews all over the world. Anti-Semitism cannot be tolerated.
– DmytroKuleba May 5 2022
“Anti-Semitism cannot be tolerated,” he added, recalling that like his Israeli counterpart Yair Lapid, “he was outraged by (these) anti-Semitic statements.”
Since the start of the Russian attack on Ukraine, Israel has tried to maintain a delicate balance between Kyiv and Moscow. In a speech at the end of March to elected members of the Israeli parliament, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called on Israel to “make a choice” by supporting Kyiv against Moscow, and demanded that the Jewish state supply it with arms. According to Israeli officials, Israel provided protective equipment to Ukraine but did not send weapons.
The “memory” of the Holocaust
Since Sergei Lavrov’s statements, Moscow has doubled down on accusations against the Jewish state. On Tuesday, the Russian diplomat accused Israel of “supporting the neo-Nazi regime in Kyiv,” saying that “history unfortunately knows tragic examples of cooperation between Jews and Nazis,” according to a statement. In another statement, Wednesday, the Russian spokeswoman said. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Maria Zakharova, confirmed that “Israeli mercenaries are on the side of the Azov fighters,” a regiment established by the far-right fighters before their integration into the Ukrainian regular forces.
The tone sounded more subdued during Thursday’s phone call between M. Putin and Bennett. According to the Kremlin, the two leaders thus discussed the “historical memory” of the Holocaust. They spoke about the importance of May 9, the date on which Russia celebrates the victory over Nazism and which allows “to commemorate all the victims of ‘World War II’ including the victims of the Holocaust,” according to the same statement. source.