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Israel relayed to Russia 'dissatisfaction' over its Hamas position as rift widens

Israel is concerned by declarations by Russian President Vladimir Putin and other officials that could signal a shift in Moscow’s views toward it.
Floral tributes and a poster depicting Russian President Vladimir Putin are seen left at the fence of the Palestinian embassy in Moscow on October 19, 2023. Thousands of people, both Israeli and Palestinians have died since October 7, 2023, after Palestinian Hamas militants entered Israel in a surprise attack leading Israel to declare war on Hamas in the Gaza Strip on October 8. (Photo by Natalia KOLESNIKOVA / AFP) (Photo by NATALIA KOLESNIKOVA/AFP via Getty Images)

Israel has quietly expressed to Russia its dissatisfaction over statements issued by Moscow on the Hamas war, a senior Israeli diplomatic source confirmed to Al-Monitor.

On Tuesday, Israel’s public broadcaster, Kan, cited an unnamed Israeli official as saying, "The Russian conduct and also the statements against Israel do not correspond to the seriousness of the situation Israel is in, which is a state of war."

Eighteen days after Hamas' Oct. 7 attack against Israel, Russia's position on it became clear when President Vladimir Putin blamed the United States for the escalation. Now Israel is concerned about a major shift in Russia's Middle East policy that could increase security threats to it from Syria and elsewhere.

On a visit to North Korea last week, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said, “We are witnessing attempts to blame everything on Iran again. We consider these quite provocative.” He added, “The Iranian leadership takes a responsible, balanced position and calls for preventing this conflict from spreading to the entire region, to neighboring countries.” 

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