Russian President Vladimir Putin gestures as he speaks during a meeting with Russian war correspondents who cover a special military operation at the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 13, 2023. (Gavriil Grigorov, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)
OAN’s Zach Petersen
3:32 PM – Friday, June 16, 2023
Russian President Vladimir Putin was on the offensive at an Economic Forum in Saint Petersburg, calling Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s Jewish roots into question.
“I have had many Jewish friends since childhood and they are telling me that Zelenskyy is not a Jew,” the Russian president said. “He is a disgrace to the Jewish people.”
Putin questioned President Zelenskyy’s Jewish roots on Friday. Additionally, he sowed doubt to his allegiances. Putin stated that Russia is currently fighting the same Nazis that killed millions of Ukrainians Jews during World War II.
“This is not a joke, it’s not an irony, you see. Neo-Nazis, the legacy of Adolf Hitler, were erected on a podium in Ukraine,” Putin said. “The Holocaust is the killing of the six million Jews. A million and a half of them were killed in Ukraine, first of all by the Banderites.”
Banderites refers to Ukrainian nationalists who were alleged Nazi accomplices led by Stepan Bandera.
He is revered by some Ukrainians as a symbol of the fall of the Soviet Union, but a Nazi collaborator to others, particularly those in the east.
In the past, Zelenskyy has previously claimed he had an “ordinary soviet Jewish upbringing and lost family in the Holocaust.”
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