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Russia, Israel Agree on Syria

Russia, Israel Agree on Syria

Monday, 25 October, 2021 - 10:00
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Sochi (EPA)

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett announced that Russian President Vladimir Putin invited him to St. Petersburg during a phone call ahead of the premier's departure from Sochi.

Bennett said that the meeting with Putin was very good and in-depth, adding that "Russia is a very important player in our region, a kind of neighbor for us in the north."

The Prime Minister also announced that he found Putin attentive to the security needs of Israel, and they discussed the situation in Syria and reached good and stable agreements.

The two also discussed the advances to the Iranian military nuclear plan, which is a concern shared by both Russia and Israel.

Political sources in Tel Aviv said that the new understandings reached by Bennett and Putin include resolving the dispute over the Israeli raids on Iranian sites in Syria.

Russia had accused Israel of carrying out "unnecessary raids" and demanded to be informed ahead of time. Moscow considered the raids on its sites would sabotage its efforts to establish stability.

However, Bennett pledged to give the Russians accurate information about any raids and ahead of time.

He also pledged that the strikes would become more localized and would not target the infrastructure of the Syrian regime.

They agreed to keep the Lebanese Hezbollah militia and other militias affiliated with Iran as far as possible from the Israeli borders.

Putin agreed to resume the work of the military coordination committee, led by deputy chiefs of staff of the two armies, according to the sources.

Russia shares Israel's concern about the danger of Iran becoming a nuclear state.

The meeting between Putin and Bennett in Sochi lasted five hours, three hours more than the scheduled time.

The two leaders discussed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for a few minutes only. Putin issued his recommendation and advice that the Israeli government should make a permanent settlement with the Palestinians based on the two-state solution.

Bennett explained that the composition of the government does not allow for a permanent settlement, but it has taken several steps to improve the living conditions of the Palestinians.

Bennett associates confirmed that the visit was very successful and that he could establish warm relations with the Russian President.

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