Lavrov’s comments on Hitler | Putin has apologized, Israel says

(Jerusalem) Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday apologized to Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett for comments by his Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who alleged that Adolf Hitler had “Jewish blood,” according to a statement from Mr. Bennett.

Posted at 2:31 PM

“The prime minister accepted President Putin’s apology for Lavrov’s comments and thanked him for clarifying his attitude toward the Jewish people and the memory of the Holocaust,” Bennett’s office said.

In a press release published by the Kremlin on Thursday, the holding of a telephone call between MM is announced. Putin and Bennett, there is no mention of an apology by the Russian president, who decided to invade Ukraine on February 24.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr “Zelensky makes this argument: how can Nazism be present (in Ukraine) if he himself is Jewish. I could be wrong, but Hitler also had Jewish blood,” Lavrov told Italian media group Mediaset on Sunday evening.

This allegation, which has been overwritten by Russia’s foreign ministry, refers to rumors regularly denied by historians and has angered Israel. The Jewish state on Monday summoned the Russian ambassador for “clarification”.

“No war can be compared to the Holocaust” […] the use of the Jewish genocide as a political tool must stop immediately,” Bennett said earlier this week, while his Secretary of State Yair Lapid denounced the comments as “outrageous, unforgivable and a horrific historical mistake.”

Lavrov’s claims were also condemned by Germany, the United States and Ukraine, whose invasion of Moscow was justified by the need to “denazify” the country.

Russian “Anti-Semitism”

For Kiev, Mr Putin’s apologies to Israel are not enough.

“I emphasize that anti-Semitism has been around for a long time among the Russian elite. The only way for Foreign Minister Lavrov to get out of this is to apologize publicly to Jews around the world,” Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on Twitter.

“Anti-Semitism cannot be tolerated,” he added, recalling that like his Israeli counterpart Yair Lapid, he was “outraged by (these) anti-Semitic comments.”

Since the launch of the Russian offensive in Ukraine, Israel has tried to maintain a delicate balance between Kiev and Moscow.

In a speech to elected members of the Israeli parliament in late March, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called on Israel to “make a choice” by backing Kiev against Moscow, and asked the Jewish state to provide it with weapons.

Israel has provided Ukraine with protective equipment, but has not sent weapons, according to Israeli officials.

“Remembrance” of the Holocaust

Since Mr. Lavrov’s comments, Moscow has multiplied the accusations against the Jewish state.

On Tuesday, Russian diplomacy accused Israel of “supporting the neo-Nazi regime in Kiev” and said “history has unfortunately known tragic examples of collaboration between Jews and Nazis,” a statement said.

In a separate statement on Wednesday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova claimed that “Israeli mercenaries stand alongside Azov militants,” a regiment previously created by far-right militants to be integrated into Ukraine’s regular armed forces.

The tone seemed a bit calmer during Thursday’s telephone conversation between MM. Putin and Bennett.

According to the Kremlin, the two leaders discussed the “historic memory” of the Holocaust.

They spoke of the importance of May 9, the date on which Russia celebrates the victory over Nazism and which makes it possible to honor “the memory of all victims” of the Second World War, “including the victims of the Holocaust”, according to the same source. .

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