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MOSCOW, June 7. /TASS/. Russia attaches great importance to bilateral ties with Israel and hopes they will get stronger in the future, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday.
"We attach great importance to our contacts with Israel, not only because Israel is one of the key countries on the situation in the Middle East, but also due to historical relations between our countries," the Russian leader said welcoming the Israeli premier in Moscow.
"I am confident that your visit will be fruitful and will serve the cause of further strengthening our relations," Putin noted.
According to the Russian president, numerous immigrants from the former Soviet Union and Russia currently living in Israel present a huge potential for developing the bilateral relations. Putin noted that, as a rule, these people "retain ties with Russia, and we, for our part, too, cherish these ties."
He added that the two countries’ leaders are constantly in touch with each other, which confirms the high level of relations between Russia and Israel.
Netanyahu said he wants relations between the two countries to grow stronger in the next 25 years.
"This visit [to Russia] is special. We mark the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations between our countries within its frameworks and we will discuss how to strengthen and develop these relations in the next 25 years," he said.
According to the Israeli prime minister, his country and Russia face common threats and have much to discuss.
He thanked the Russian leader for the warn reception and noted that the Russian language is a "live bridge" between the two countries.
"This bridge will help us achieve remarkable results in future that would rest not only on common interests but also on empathy and mutual liking. I would like to say thanks for this visit to you once again," Netanyahu said.