Photo Credit: Kobi Gideon / GPO
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Russia's President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, Jan. 29 2018

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to meet Thursday with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin during a one-day visit to Sochi.

The two men are slated to discuss “further bilateral cooperation, as well as exchange view on the situation in the Middle East as part of the negotiations,” the TASS news agency reported.


According to a release from Netanyahu’s office, regional issues on the agenda will include “the situation in Syria, with an emphasis on tightening the military coordination mechanisms.”

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu will also meet with Netanyahu, who will be accompanied by Israel’s Director of the National Security Council, GOC Intelligence and GOC Operations.

Russia’s foreign ministry expressed concern on Wednesday over a statement by Netanyahu Tuesday evening, pledging to extend Israeli sovereignty to most of the Jordan Valley and the northern area of the Dead Sea.

The Russian foreign ministry said Netanyahu’s plan — which specifically excluded the annexation of “even one Palestinian” and which “did not touch Jericho” – nevertheless could lead to a “sharp escalation of tensions in the region, undermining hopes for the establishment of long-awaited peace between Israel and its Arab neighbors.”

Meanwhile the Palestinian Authority government loudly continues its investment of more than a third of its annual budget to pay generous monthly salaries to bloodthirsty terrorists who attack Israeli men, women and children. PA leader Mahmoud Abbas’s government also continues to bestow eternal public honors on the killers of Israelis who die in the effort.

In addition, children are taught vicious anti-Semitism and incitement to murder from the very youngest ages in the classroom, via activities and even in school textbooks. It’s not clear how that could possibly contribute to the cause of a “long-awaited peace between Israel and its Arab neighbors.”

Perhaps President Putin will clarify the statement to Prime Minister Netanyahu on Thursday.


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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.