The Russian President said that the deterioration of the situation in the Middle East is the result of the failed policy of the United States.

Iran PressEurope: Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday said civilian casualties will be absolutely unacceptable in case of an Israeli ground operation in the Gaza Strip.

Speaking at a meeting of the heads of the Commonwealth of Independents States (CIS) in Kyrgyzstan's capital Bishkek, Putin said that employing heavy military equipment in residential areas carries significant risks for all parties involved, yet conducting the operation without it poses its own set of challenges.

The Russian leader blamed the US for the current escalation in the Palestine-Israel conflict, saying Washington tried, with the help of certain measures of economic stimulation, to solve the political problem, namely the creation of a Palestinian State.

"The current escalation is a direct result of the failed US policy in the Middle East, the United States tried to monopolize the Middle East settlement, but was not concerned about finding compromises, and did not take into account the fundamental interests of the Palestinian people," Putin stressed.

He said that Washington blocked the work of the Middle East Quartet – the group that Russia, the EU, UN, and US, formed to address the issues of the Palestine-Israel conflict.

"All this gradually led to today's aggravation. We will talk about this in an informal meeting," he said.

Putin also reiterated Russia's readiness to act as a mediator in the Palestinian-Israeli settlement.

Putin cautions Israel against Nazi-like siege

Also, Russian President Vladimir Putin cautioned Israel against laying siege to Gaza in the same way that Nazi Germany besieged Leningrad, saying a ground offensive there would lead to an “absolutely unacceptable” number of civilian casualties.

He said there had been calls even in the United States for a blockade of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip on a par with “the siege of Leningrad during World War II”.

Putin concluded: “In my view it is unacceptable. More than two million people live there. Far from all of them support Hamas by the way, far from all. But all of them have to suffer including women and children. Of course, it’s hard for anyone to agree with this."



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