Russian President Vladimir Putin is particularly fond of matzah and eats the unleavened flatbread, which is part of the Jewish cuisine during Passover, all year round, according to Russia's Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar, a close associate of the Russian leader.
Lazar told reporters during the Limmud FSU festival, which is aimed at strengthening the Jewish identity of Russian-speaking Jews, that Putin eats matzah while drinking tea.
"Putin said matzah is tasty, easy and healthy to eat. He eats the matzah I bring him," the rabbi said.The Limmud FSU festival took place in Moscow to mark Israel's 70th Independence Day. Some 2,000 people attended the festival, including Immigrant Absorption Minister Sofa Landver, Israel's Ambassador to Russia Gary Koren and Deputy Director General of the Euro-Asia Department of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs Alexander Ben-Zvi.
Chaim Chesler, the founder of Limmud FSU, said the festival, the flagship event of the organization, is being held in Russia's capital, Moscow, for the 12th consecutive year. "The festival is the most important event for Russia's Jewry and I hope the organization will continue strengthening the young Jewish generation in Russia for many years to come," Chesler added.
Chief Rabbi Lazar emphasized Putin's involvement in the Jewish community in Russia. "Putin knows which city has a synagogue and which city doesn't. The Jewish museum was inaugurated following his visit to Yad Vashem in Jerusalem where he was very moved. He even contributed one of his salaries to the Jewish museum project," Lazar elaborated.