Russia’s strong-handed approach in the takeover of Ukraine’s Crimean Region has been widely condemned and it seems the British Royal Family also have their criticisms of Vladimir Putin’s tactics.
The heir to the British throne, Prince Charles got himself into the media spotlight earlier this week after he likened the actions of Putin to them of Adolf Hitler.
The Prince was on a trip to Canada when the remarks were made during a private conversation with a Jewish woman who had fled Poland during World War Two. Prince Charles is believed to have told her, according to the Daily Mail newspaper, that in Ukraine ‘Putin is doing just about the same as Hitler’.
Backlash to the comments were almost instant from the Russian government who demanded an explanation, yet a British Foreign Office representative said it had told a senior Russian official in London on Thursday that it would not comment on reports of private conversations.
The 65-year-old’s remarks were described by a Royal source as ‘well-intentioned’ and not meant to be made public.
However, a spokesman for the Russian Foreign Ministry seemed less convinced as he told a news conference: “If these words were truly spoken, then, without doubt, they do not reflect well on the future British monarch.
“We view the use of the Western press by members of the British Royal Family to spread the propaganda campaign against Russia on a pressing issue - that is, the situation in Ukraine - as unacceptable, outrageous and low.”
Putin, a former KGB spy who has repeatedly spoken about the sacrifices of what Russians call the Great Patriotic War, lost a brother in the Nazi siege of Leningrad.
The Soviet Union lost more than 20 million people in the war and the victory over Nazi Germany is celebrated across Russia as a national triumph.
It is not the first time that the man destined to be king has taken British politicians and royal watchers by surprise. In a private diary that was leaked, he once described the Chinese Communist leadership as ‘appalling old waxworks’.