Putin's exact words, provided by the English version of the Kremlin's official website, were, "The only way to help Palestine is to fight those who are behind this tragedy. We, Russia, are fighting them in a special military operation, fighting them for ourselves and for those who seek real, true freedom."
On Oct. 30, 2023, some X (formerly Twitter) users claimed that Russian President Vladimir Putin said, “There is no way to help the Palestinians except by fighting those behind their conflict, and we are fighting them in Ukraine.”
🇷🇺🇵🇸 President Putin: “There is no way to help the Palestinians except by fighting those behind their conflict, and we are fighting them in Ukraine.” pic.twitter.com/abVgVz42QO
— Jackson Hinkle 🇺🇸 (@jacksonhinklle) October 30, 2023
As Reuters reported on Oct. 30, 2023:
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday sought to blame the West for the crisis in the Middle East, where Israel is bombing the Gaza Strip to try to eradicate Hamas militants who killed some 1,400 people, mostly civilians, in Israel on Oct. 7.
In a televised statement to a meeting of members of his Security Council and the government and the heads of law enforcement agencies, Putin said the "ruling elites of the U.S." and their "satellites" stood behind the killing of Gaza's Palestinians, and behind conflicts in Ukraine, Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.
Moreover, the Reuter's article mentioned a Putin statement similar to the one shared by social media users:
Putin said Russia was fighting the shadowy U.S. forces he blamed for the Middle East crisis on the battlefields of Ukraine.
"Palestine can only be helped by fighting those who are behind this tragedy. We are Russia and we are fighting them in the context of the 'special military operation'. Both for ourselves and for those who strive for real true freedom," he said.
We found the in-question Putin's statement on an official website of the president of the Russian federation, kremlin.ru. The article with the title, "Meeting with members of the Security Council and Government, and heads of security agencies," read (emphasis ours):
We must clearly understand who in reality is behind the tragedy of peoples in the Middle East and in other regions around the world, who has been organising this lethal chaos and who benefits from it. In my opinion, it has already become clear to everyone, as the masterminds brazenly act in the open.
These are the current ruling elites in the United States and its satellites who are the main beneficiaries of the global instability that they use to extract their bloody rent. Their strategy is also clear. The United States as a global superpower is becoming weaker and is losing its position, and everyone sees and understands this, even judging by the trends in the world economy. The American-style world, with the hegemony of one country, is being destroyed and is receding gradually but inexorably into the past.
Putin, after stating that the "ruling elites in the United States" are "behind the tragedy of peoples in the Middle East," continued to elaborate on the topic, directly referring to Palestinians and claiming that the U.S. needed "constant chaos in the Middle East" (emphasis ours):
I will repeat again: the ruling elites of the United States and its satellites are behind the tragedy of the Palestinians, the massacre in the Middle East in general, the conflict in Ukraine, and many other conflicts in the world – in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and so on. This has become obvious to everyone. It is they who install their military bases everywhere, who use military force on every pretext and without any pretext, who send weapons to conflict areas. They are also channelling financial resources, including to Ukraine and the Middle East, and fueling hatred in Ukraine and the Middle East.
They do not need durable peace in the Holy Land; they need constant chaos in the Middle East. Consequently, they are trying hard to discredit countries that are insisting on an immediate ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, on ending the bloodshed, and that are ready to make a real contribution to resolving the crisis, rather than parasitising on it. They are even attacking, ostracising and trying to discredit the UN and the clear position of the global community.
Moreover, Putin informed that Russia was supporting the idea of "establishing a sovereign and independent Palestinian state," yet again referring to the conflict in Ukraine:
I would like to note that, unlike the West, our approaches towards the situation in the Middle East have always lacked mercenary interests, intrigues and double standards. We have stated and continue to openly state our position, which does not change every year. The key to resolving the conflict lies in establishing a sovereign and independent Palestinian state, a full-fledged Palestinian state. We have repeatedly said this openly and honestly during our contacts with the Palestinian and Israeli leaders.
I would like to say once again that we must realise where the root of evil lies. We must know where the spider that is trying to entangle the entire planet and the whole world in its cobweb is. It wants to ensure our strategic defeat on the battlefield, and it is using people on the territory of contemporary Ukraine who have been brainwashed by it for decades. I would like to stress once again that, while fighting this enemy in the course of the special military operation, we are boosting the positions of all those who are struggling for their independence and sovereignty.
Finally, near the end of the statement, Putin claimed that Russia was helping Palestine by conducting "a special military operation" in Ukraine. Here, he makes the remark that eventually went viral:
The only way to help Palestine is to fight those who are behind this tragedy. We, Russia, are fighting them in a special military operation, fighting them for ourselves and for those who seek real, true freedom.
We checked whether the Russian version (we translated it using Google Translate) of that part of Putin's statement differed from the English one; however, it was highly similar to the one published in English:
We can only help Palestine in the fight against those who are behind this tragedy. We, Russia, are fighting them within the framework of a special military operation, precisely against them – both for ourselves and for those who strive for real, true freedom.
All in all, although the English version of Putin's remarks did not state, verbatim, "There is no way to help the Palestinians except by fighting those behind their conflict, and we are fighting them in Ukraine," Putin issued a nearly identical statement, reading: "The only way to help Palestine is to fight those who are behind this tragedy. We, Russia, are fighting them in a special military operation [...]." Therefore, we have rated that claim as a Correct Attribution.