Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky responded to the words of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. As a reminder, the latter earlier said that «there may be Nazism in Ukraine regardless of the Jewish roots of President Vladimir Zelensky,» because «Hitler also had Jewish roots» and added that «the most ardent anti-Semites» can be found among the Jews.
«How could anyone even say such a thing on the eve of the anniversary of the victory over Nazism? These words mean that Russia's highest diplomat is shifting the blame for the Nazis' crimes onto the Jewish people. I don't know what to say.
Of course, there was a great uproar in Israel today. But no one hears denials or excuses from Moscow. They are silent there - which means they agree with what their foreign minister said. After the Russian missile strike on Babi Yar in Kyiv, after the shell-damaged menorah at the site of the mass shooting in Drobitsky Yar near Kharkiv, after the deaths of ordinary people who survived the Nazi occupation and concentration camps, such an anti-Semitic attack by their minister means that the Russian leadership has forgotten all the lessons of World War II. Or maybe they never learned those lessons.
And so the question is: will the Ambassador of Israel remain in Moscow, knowing this new position of theirs? Will relations with Russia remain the same? Because none of this is coincidental. The words of the Russian Foreign Minister, «the great expert on Hitlerism», are not coincidental,» Zelensky said.
Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid has already reacted to Lavrov's statement earlier. He said the Russian side must apologize for his words: «We are making every effort to maintain good relations with Russia, but there is a line, and this time it has been crossed. The Russian government must apologize to us and to the Jewish people.»