Photo Credit: Hadas Parush / Flash 90
The border fence between Israel and Syria in the southern Golan Heights, July 29, 2018.

Israel’s military censor released for publication on Tuesday night the information that Israel has turned to the Russian government for assistance on a “sensitive” humanitarian issue with Syria.

Earlier in the day some ministers were told that the cabinet meeting they were to attend, the details of which have been put under embargo by the IDF Military Censor, revolved around a “sensitive security issue,” Ynet reported.

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Israel’s Hebrew-language Walla! News reported the conversations took place between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Russian President Vladimir Putin; between Defense Minister Benny Gantz and his Russian counterpart Army General Sergey Shoygu; and between foreign ministers Gabi Ashkenazi and Sergey Lavrov over the past two days.

Details of the talks were under strict censorship.

It was expected that Prime Minister Netanyahu would address the nation on national television Tuesday night after the conclusion of an “urgent” Israeli cabinet meeting that was called on very short notice, also under strict censorship and very tight security.

However, the prime minister’s address was never broadcast although the reason is unclear and no explanation was given.

According to a report by Israel’s Channel 12 television news team, the matter under discussion concerns an Israeli individual, a “humanitarian issue with diplomatic aspects” but nothing to do with any attack by the IDF, nor anything relating to an escalation of a security incident.”

Two years ago, in March 2019, the body of missing IDF soldier Zachary Baumel was brought to Israel with Russian assistance. Baumel had been missing since the Battle of Sultan Yacoub in 1982.

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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 Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.
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