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A video of Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov saying that in order for Russians to not lose sleep over the Ukraine war, they must imagine the eastern European country is “Palestine,” has been shared by the Russian embassy in Geneva.

“When the United States declares that there is a threat to the United States 10,000 kilometers from the border of the United States, some people were grumbling, some were expressing their concern, but there was no hysteria like the one we witness today,” he said in the video footage, shared on May 11. It is not immediately clear when it was recorded.

“When Russia having warned for many, many years, that this is going to be a problem that we cannot tolerate a threat which NATO and the United States have been building just on our border, not 10,000 kilometers away,” he said, laughing.

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“You know, there was one interesting message I saw in Telegram from the Middle East. They say ‘if you if you cannot sleep because of the Russian conflict, here’s some advices to calm you down. First, imagine this is happening in Africa. Imagine this is happening in the Middle East. Imagine Ukraine is Palestine, imagine Russia is the United States.”

The video has picked up traction online, shared by several people and being viewed more than 80,000 times.

FM Sergey #Lavrov:

To quote a message from @telegram to all, who cannot sleep due to the / conflict – there are advices to calm you down:

1 Imagine this is happening in Africa, or the Middle East. Imagine Ukraine is Palestine

2 Imagine Russia is the United States pic.twitter.com/GOPd1HVBDD

— Russian Mission in Geneva (@mission_russian) May 11, 2022

Newsweek has contacted Israel’s foreign ministry for comment.

This is a developing story..

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov speaks during a joint press conference with UN Secretary-General following their talks in Moscow on April 26, 2022. Lavrov has compared Ukraine to Africa and Palestine in a recent video.Getty