Russian President Vladimir Putin called Israel a Russian-speaking country and talking about ties between the two countries on Tuesday.

“We consider Israel a Russian-speaking country,” he said at the Keren Hayesod foundation’s annual conference held in Moscow. “Russians and Israelis have ties of family and friendship. Our nations are united by common and often tragic pages in history.”

He noted that Russia invited Israeli leaders to Moscow next year to attend celebrations marking the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II.

Putin also discussed the importance of teaching future generations about the war, according to The Moscow Times.

He explained, “The positions of Russia and Israel, the peoples of our countries, coincide. We consider any attempt to revise the outcome of the war, to distort the truth and justify fascism and its lapdogs, completely unacceptable.”

Israel is home to the world’s largest population of Russian Jewry, with about 17 percent of the country’s population is Russian-speaking, according to research.

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