Tel Aviv says Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov’s comments about Jews are a ‘historic mistake’
Israel summoned the Russian ambassador, after Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov hinted that Adolf Hitler may have Jewish blood and that the “most ardent” the anti-Semites are themselves Jews.
“Foreign Minister Lavrov’s remarks are both an unforgivable and outrageous statement as well as a terrible historical error,” Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid tweeted on Monday.
“The Jews did not kill themselves during the Holocaust. The lowest level of racism against Jews is to accuse Jews themselves of anti-Semitism.
Lapid says Israel awaits apology, Russian ambassador summoned “for a difficult conversation.”
Other Israeli officials also expressed outrage at Lavrov’s comments, including Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, who accused Russia’s top diplomat of using the Holocaust. as a political tool. The Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem also denounced Lavrov’s words as false and dangerous. Moscow did not comment on the matter.
Speaking to Italian media company Mediaset on Sunday, Lavrov confirmed that one of the goals of the Russian military campaign in Ukraine is the “denazification” from the country. A journalist mentioned that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is Jewish.
Lavrov replied “I could be wrong, but Hitler also had Jewish blood in him. It means absolutely nothing. Jewish sages say that the most ardent anti-Semites are usually Jews. Every family has a black sheep, as we like to say.
Earlier in the interview, the minister referred to the Ukrainian Azov Battalion, whose fighters include people with openly nationalist and Nazi views. He said captured fighters from Azov and other units display Nazi symbols on their uniforms and have swastika tattoos. They “read openly and promote ‘Mein Kampf'” Lavrov added, referring to Hitler’s book.
The Russian Foreign Ministry summoned the Israeli ambassador last month over Lapid “anti-Russian” comments regarding Moscow’s actions in Ukraine.
Russia attacked Ukraine in late February, after kyiv’s failure to implement the terms of the Minsk agreements, first signed in 2014, and Moscow’s eventual recognition of the Donbass republics of Donetsk and Luhansk . The protocols negotiated by Germany and France were designed to give breakaway regions a special status within the Ukrainian state.
The Kremlin has since demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join the US-led NATO military bloc. kyiv insists the Russian offensive was unprovoked and has denied claims it planned to retake the two republics by force.
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