Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett reportedly told Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in a phone call on Tuesday that he recommends Ukraine surrender to Russia, a Ukrainian official told The Jerusalem Post.
The deal unveiled publicly on Monday would require Ukraine to cede the Crimea Peninsula to Russia formally, recognize the independence of the separatist Donetsk and Luhansk states, and amend their constitution to forbid membership in Western institutions, The Week reported.
"If I were you, I would think about the lives of my people and take the offer," the source claimed Bennett said, after initiating the phone call.
"I hear you," Zelenskyy responded.
Bennett also reportedly asked that Ukraine stop requesting more military and defense aid from the West, arguing it could harm mediation efforts by escalating the situation.
Zelenskyy and his advisers were reportedly offended by the insinuation.
"Bennett told us to surrender," the official alleged. "We have no intention of doing so. We know Putin's offer is only the beginning."
The official described Bennett's mediator efforts as nothing more than passing messages between the two sides and suggested that he may be biased.
"We don't need a mailbox," said the official. "We have enough of those. If Bennett wants to be neutral and mediate, we would expect to see him appoint someone to work on it day and night and try to get a compromise."
The official said the Ukrainian government is convinced Bennett's desire to be involved in diplomatic efforts between the two countries comes more from not wanting to take a public stance against Russia than a desire to end the conflict fairly.
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