Vladimir Putin has weighed in on the current conflict between Israel and Hamas, hypocritically demanding that "women, children and the elderly" be spared.
Since the Russian President launched his "special military operation" in Ukraine in February 2022, thousands of civilians – including women, children and the elderly – have been killed by missile strikes and kamikaze drones.
Moreover, his Russian forces have been responsible for a number of war crimes. For example in Bucha, a city close to Kyiv, hundreds of civilians were found dead in mass graves after Russian forces withdrew at the start of the conflict.
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Referring to Israel and Palestine, Putin said this week: "We need to strive to minimise or reduce to zero, to a minimum, civilian casualties. Women, children, the elderly. If men decide to fight among themselves, let them fight among themselves. Children, women, leave them alone. This applies to both sides."
Putin's comments came at a forum at Russian Energy Week. He went on to take aim at the US for "pulling aircraft carrier groups towards Israel", accusing them of "aggravating the situation".
He said: "[It is] unknown whether it will be possible to calm the situation between Israel and Palestine in the near future, but this could lead to big problems."
Putin blamed the West for the situation that is unfolding between Israel and Palestine. He said: "Initially, when the decision was made to create the State of Israel, a decision was made at the same time to create a second state.
"Initially, it was about the creation of two independent and sovereign states – Israel and Palestine… Israel, as you know, was created, but Palestine as an independent and sovereign state was never created."
The unprecedented recent events started after Palestinian militant group Hamas – deemed a terror organisation by the UK government – stormed Israeli communities and killed hundreds on Saturday (October 7). Israel declared war on Hamas in response, targeting the Gaza Strip with a campaign of airstrikes.
The Israeli government has stopped the passage of food, water, fuel and medicine into Gaza as airstrikes continue. Access from Egypt was closed on Tuesday (October 10) after airstrikes near the border crossing. The latest figures suggest more than 1,200 people have been killed in Israel, and 900 in Gaza.
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