Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned that Israel’s war with Palestinians in Gaza could spread well beyond West Asia if the bloodshed in the region could not stop soon.
Putin made the comments during a meeting with Russian religious leaders of different faiths in Kremlin, Reuters reported.
He said it was wrong that innocent women, children and old people in Gaza were being punished by Israel.
The Russian leader said he told other world leaders in phone calls that if bloodshed did not stop, there was a risk of a much wider conflagration.
“Our task today, our main task, is to stop the bloodshed and violence,” said Putin, according to a Kremlin transcript of the meeting.
“Otherwise, further escalation of the crisis is fraught with grave and extremely dangerous and destructive consequences. And not only for the Middle East region. It could spill over far beyond the borders of the Middle East,” he stated.
The Russian president slammed certain Western powers, saying they are seeking to provoke further escalation and to draw as many other countries and peoples into the conflict as possible.
He added that the aim is to “launch a real wave of chaos and mutual hatred not only in the Middle East but also far beyond its borders.”
“For this purpose, among other things, they are trying to play on the national and religious feelings of millions of people,” he added.
Putin said Russia continued to advocate for a two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli issue, something he said was the only way to reach a long-term settlement.
He said Israel was wrong to keep bombing Gaza in retaliation for the Hamas attack.
Putin denounced “the notorious principle of collective responsibility when old people, women, children, entire families and hundreds of thousands of people are left without shelter, food, water, electricity and medical care.”
Israel has heavily bombarded the Gaza Strip since October 7, leaving over 6,500 people dead, including more than 2,700 children, and 18, 000 others injured during its 19 days of aggression.
The regime’s strikes are coupled with a crippling siege of Gaza. Israel has also barred any fuel transport into the strip.