Yair Lapid
Yair Lapid Sivan Shachor/GPO

Russia on Sunday summoned Israel’s Ambassador to Russia, Alex Ben Zvi, for a reprimand at the Russian Foreign Ministry on Monday.

The move follows Foreign Minister Yair Lapid's condemnation of the Russians in response to his decision to support Russia's suspension from the UN Human Rights Council.

On Friday, the Russian Foreign Ministry criticized "anti-Russian" remarks made by Lapid, in which he defended Israel's vote to suspend Russia from the UNHRC.

After the vote, in a joint statement with the foreign ministers of Greece and Cyprus in Athens, Lapid had said, "We are meeting in difficult times. There is a war in Europe. Again a large and powerful country invades without any justification for the territory of a smaller and weaker country. Once again, the earth absorbs the blood of the innocent."

He then attacked Russia and said, "The images and testimonies coming from Ukraine are appalling. The Russian forces committed war crimes against a defenseless civilian population. I strongly condemn these war crimes."

The Russian Foreign Ministry called Lapid's statement after the vote "regrettable."

"There was a poorly camouflaged attempt to take advantage of the situation in Ukraine to distract the international community’s attention from one of the oldest unsettled conflicts – the Palestinian-Israeli one," it said, according to the Russian news agency TASS.