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Israeli prime minister meets with Putin to discuss Ukraine

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow Saturday to discuss Russia’s war with Ukraine. 

A spokesperson for Bennett’s said that he met with Putin at the Kremlin, and afterwards the Israeli leader spoke on the phone with Ukrainian Volodymyr Zelensky, Reuters reported.

An Israeli official said that the prime minister is coordinating efforts with the U.S., Germany and France on the issue, according to the wire service.

The meeting between Bennett and Putin lasted for three hours, but no major breakthroughs have yet been reported. The Israeli official said Bennett discussed how the fighting in Ukraine has affected the Jewish community at large.

Zelensky and Bennett are the only two Jewish heads of government in the world, according to The New York Times. 

To meet with Putin, Bennett broke with the Sabbath to travel to Moscow, but his office said it was allowed under religious law because the aim of the meeting was to preserve human life, according to Reuters. 

Before attending the meeting, Bennett spoke French President Emmanuel Macron to learn what he and Putin previously discussed, the Elysée Palace said.

Israel has voiced its support for Ukraine amid the invasion and is sending medical supplies, but said it would not cut off ties with Russia as the country hopes to find a resolution to the conflict, Reuters noted. 

Along with the Ukraine conflict, Bennett and Putin discussed the 2015 Iran Nuclear deal.

Following his meeting in Russia, Bennett was headed to Germany to meet with Chancellor Olaf Scholz. 

Tags Emmanuel Macron Emmanuel Macron Naftali Bennett Post-Soviet conflicts Russo-Ukrainian War Vladimir Putin Volodymyr Zelensky

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