TEL AVIV, May 5. /TASS/. Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed on Thursday in their telephone conversation recent statements of Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov voiced in an interview with Italian media, the press office of the Israeli PM said in a statement on Thursday.
According to the statement, "Bennett and Putin discussed Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s statements" during their telephone conversation.
"The prime minister has accepted Putin’s apologies for Lavrov’s words and thanked the president for explaining his attitude toward Jewish people and the commemoration of Holocaust victims," the statement reads.
On May 1, in an interview with Rete 4 of Italy’s Mediaset broadcaster, Lavrov talked about Russia’s fundamental stance on the events in Ukraine, pointing out that the Kiev regime with the support of the US does not want to continue negotiations as well as noted false information disseminated by Western media outlets and explained some decisions by Russia’s leadership.
During the interview, the Russian top diplomat also commented on statements by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky that "Nazification" is not possible in his country since he is Jewish. In response, Lavrov noted that he could be mistaken but Hitler also had Jewish roots. This raised some eyebrows in a number of countries.
The press office of Bennett also reported that "the prime minister thanked the [Russian] president for his greetings extended on the occasion of the 74th anniversary of the Independence Day in Israel."
The Kremlin’s press office said in a statement earlier in the day that Putin congratulated Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett with the Independence Day of Israel, celebrated on May 5.
"The head of the Russian state has extended his warm congratulations to Naftali Bennett and the people of Israel on the occasion of today’s national holiday - the Independence Day," the statement reads.
The Kremlin’s press office said in its statement that both leaders "expressed mutual interest in the future development of the Russian-Israeli ties and further support of useful contacts between the authorities of two countries."
The statement also added that "In the run-up to the Victory Day…, which is celebrated both in Russia and Israel on May 9, Vladimir Putin and Naftali Bennett stressed a particular significance of this date for people of both countries, who cherish the historic truth of these years’ events and commemorate the memory of all of the fallen, including Holocaust victims.".