Israel on Monday slammed Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov for suggesting that Nazi leader Adolf Hitler had Jewish roots, and demanded an apology from Moscow, Reuters reports.
Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said the Russian ambassador would be summoned for “a tough talk” about the comments, which Lavrov made Sunday in an interview with Italian television.
“It is an unforgivable and outrageous statement, a terrible historical mistake, and we expect an apology,” Lapid told the YNet news website.
The Russian embassy had no immediate comment.
During his interview with Italian channel Rete 4, Lavrov was asked how Russia could claim it needed to “denazify” Ukraine when the country’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, was Jewish.
Israel blasts Russian minster Lavrov's Hitler remarks—"Unforgivable" https://t.co/HZFbQ3vide
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“When they say ‘what kind of Nazification is this if we are Jews,’ well, I think Hitler also had Jewish origins, so it doesn’t mean anything,” Lavrov said, speaking through an Italian interpreter.
“We have long heard Jewish sages say that the biggest anti-Semites are the Jews themselves,” he added.
Dani Dayan, chairman of Yad Vashem, the Israeli memorial to the six million Jews murdered in the Holocaust, called Lavrov’s remarks “an insult and a harsh blow to the victims of real Nazism.”
Speaking on Israel’s Kan radio, Dayan said Lavrov was spreading “an anti-Semitic conspiracy theory with no basis whatsoever.”
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