In an indication of the urgency of the mission, Mr. Bennett, an observant Jew, left Israel on Saturday morning, in the course of the Sabbath, breaking the non secular injunction towards journey. In keeping with Jewish non secular legislation, the sanctity of the Sabbath is overridden by the precept of preserving human life.
Mr. Bennett was accompanied by Zeev Elkin, the Israeli housing minister, who assisted with translation, in keeping with the Israeli prime minister’s workplace. Mr. Elkin ceaselessly acted in the same capability over the previous decade in conferences between Mr. Bennett’s predecessor, Benjamin Netanyahu, and Mr. Putin. Mr. Elkin, who can also be an observant Jew, was born in Kharkiv, Ukraine, in 1971, when it was a part of the Soviet Union, and emigrated to Israel in 1990.
The Israeli delegation additionally included the prime minister’s nationwide safety adviser, Eyal Hulata, his diplomatic adviser, Shimrit Meir, and his spokesman, Matan Sidi.
Mr. Bennett had are available in for criticism in current days, together with from Mr. Zelensky, for not siding extra stridently with Ukraine and for refraining from supplying it with any army tools.
Israeli officers stated that Israel needed to preserve good relations with Russia so as to have the ability to proceed Israel’s army marketing campaign towards Iranian and Hezbollah entrenchment in Syria, the place Russia maintains a big presence.
They stated Israel was additionally involved concerning the giant Jewish communities in each Russia and Ukraine. After Saturday’s assembly on the Kremlin, Mr. Bennett’s workplace stated he had additionally spoken with Mr. Putin concerning the state of affairs of Israelis and Jewish communities on account of the battle in Ukraine.
Saturday’s assembly comes after a number of requests from Mr. Zelensky, each to Mr. Netanyahu and Mr. Bennett, to mediate between him and Mr. Putin. The final request was made in a phone dialog held on Feb. 25, throughout which Mr. Zelensky additionally requested army tools. Whereas declining to ship defensive gear, Mr. Bennett agreed to attempt to mediate between the international locations.