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Putin-Netanyahu talks to focus on Syria, Iran and bilateral ties

January 29, 14:20 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The two states have a busy agenda at the moment

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© Mikhail Metzel/TASS

MOSCOW, January 29. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will discuss the situation in Syria, Iran and bilateral relations, Israeli Ambassador to Russia Gary Koren said in an interview with TASS on Monday.

The Israeli envoy said the visit had been initiated by Russia. "The developments in our region are fast-paced and turbulent. This will be the seventh meeting already between our leaders since the Russian Aerospace Forces began their activity in Syria," Koren noted.

"So this is another meeting, and I presume the agenda will of course cover Syria, the Iran-Syria issue and specifically the subject of Iran, and, of course, our good bilateral relations," the diplomat explained.

He also expects the two leaders to focus on bilateral agreements underway on the adoption of Russian children and mutual recognition of military service. "Certainly, the two leaders will note that the agreement that oversees the adoption of children in Russia is successfully nearing completion. We believe it will be signed in the first quarter of 2018," the Israeli diplomat said.

"We are also heading towards the homestretch on inking an agreement that regulates issues of military service in our country and in the Russian Federation. Individuals with dual citizenship who were called up for military service in Russia will not serve in Israel, and vice versa," he explained.

Koren stressed that the two countries have a busy agenda right now. "Thus a visit by Agriculture Minister Alexander Tkachev is on the agenda, since one of the main projects between our countries is cooperation in dairy farming driven by Israeli technologies. Israel ranks first worldwide in milk yield. We expect information from the Russian side on what regions the pilot projects will be carried out in," he stated.

The most recent meeting between the Russian president and the Israeli prime minister was at the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi on August 23, 2017. Commenting on the talks, Netanyahu said on the same day that each meeting with Putin benefits Israel’s security. Prior to that, the Russian and Israeli leaders met in Moscow on March 10, 2017 and on June 7, 2016 when the Israeli prime minister’s visit to Russia was timed to mark the 25th anniversary of the restoration of diplomatic relations between Russia and Israel. All in all, Benjamin Netanyahu has visited Russia 12 times during his premiership in 1996-1999 and from 2009 to the present day.

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