JERUSALEM—Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is to discuss Iran’s presence in Syria with Russian President Vladimir Putin Wednesday in Moscow.
According to Israeli media, Netanyahu has not meet with Putin since Russia blamed a downing of its military plane in Syria on Israel last September.
But ahead of his departure for Russia, Netanyahu declared : “We are leaving for a very important meeting with President Putin in Moscow. It is not correct that this is my first meeting with him since the Ilyushin plane was downed by Syrian forces because I met with him In Paris and we discussed that we would meet again and we are doing just that. Since then, of course, we have spoken by telephone several times including a few days ago.’’
He added : ‘’The conversation will certainly deal with several issues, but from our point-of-view, the focus of the talks will be preventing Iran from entrenching in Syria, the entrenchment of a country which explicitly says that its goal is to wipe us out. You know that when I say we are acting against this, these are no empty words.’’
He also said he would discuss with President Putin ‘’into details as we do’’ in order ‘’ to ensure that the Russian military and the IDF coordinate in such a manner so as to prevent friction and clashes between us,’’ adding that this is the main goal for which I am traveling to Moscow, there are other goals.”
Netanyahu is accompanied by Minister Zeev Elkin and National Security Council Director Meir Ben-Shabbat and the chief of the IDF Military Intelligence Maj.-Gen. Tamir Heiman.