ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 146

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Former PM Bennett: Putin assured me he wouldn’t kill Zelensky

This combination of file pictures created on March 6, 2022, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett (L, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky (C) and Russian President Vladimir Putin. (Various sources/AFP)
This combination of file pictures created on March 6, 2022, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett (L, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky (C) and Russian President Vladimir Putin. (Various sources/AFP)

Former prime minister Naftali Bennett says Russian President Vladimir Putin assured him, in the early days of the war when he flew to Russia in a mediation effort, that he wouldn’t kill Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky

“He gave me two great concessions,” says Zelensky of his meeting with Putin in Moscow on March 5, 2022. “I knew Zelensky was under threat, in a bunker… I said to him [Putin], ‘Do you intend to kill Zelensky?’ He said, ‘I won’t kill Zelensky,'” Bennett says in the interview, conducted with journalist Hanoch Daum and self-published on Bennett’s own Youtube channel.

“I need to understand, are you giving me your word that you won’t kill Zelensky?” Bennett recalls asking Putin. “He said, ‘I won’t kill Zelensky.'”

Bennett says he called Zelensky immediately after the meeting, and told him, “I’ve just come out of a meeting, he is not going to kill you. He asked me, ‘Are you sure?’ I said 100 percent. He’s not going to kill you.”

“Two hours later, Zelensky went to his office, and did a selfie in the office, [in which the Ukrainian president said,] ‘I’m not afraid’ and everything.”

Bennett says Putin also agreed not to push for the disarming of Ukraine, and Zelensky that same weekend dropped his push to join NATO.

“Everything I did [in the mediation effort] was coordinated with the US,” Bennett adds.

The full interview (with English subtitles) can be watched at the link below.

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