Russian President Vladimir Putin is beginning to his first tour to Middle East after seven years with a trip to Israel, Palestinians and Jordan.
Vladimir Putin’s trip to Israel, the Palestinian Territories and Jordan is seen as an attempt to extensions Russia’s clout in the region at a time when the West and some Arab nations have criticised Moscow’s stance opposing their efforts to force out Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Russian President Putin will unveil a monument to Russian soldiers of the Second World War at the coastal city of Netanya.
Iran’s nuclear ambitions and the continuing crisis in Syria are expected to top the agenda of Vladimir Putin’s talks with Israeli leaders. Israel and Russia have robust cultural relations, with Israel home to more than 1000,000 immigrants from the Russian country. Netanya itself has a meaningful Russian community.
Russian leader Vladimir Putin arrives in Israel to discuss Syria / meeting with Netanyahu and Peres
Dmitri Trenin - Director of the Carnegie Endowment’s Moscow Centre and Russian foreign policy expert said that commander Vladimir Putin has a rather close relationship with Israeli functionary. He added : ‘ He wants Russia to be a player in the region. Given all the turmoil at the moment, Israel looks like the only place that it makes sense for Mr Putin to visit. The Palestinian leg should also enhance Russia’s prestige – Russia still has hopes of one day staging a Middle East Peace conference. It is member of the Middle East diplomatic steering group the Quartet, and it cares about how it is perceived. ‘
Russian leader Vladimir Putin will also meet Israel’s Russian-speaking Foreign Minister Avignor Lieberman, President of the State of Israel Shimon Peres and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Russia confirms : Vladimir Putin plans his first trip to Middle East in seven years with a trip to Israel
Some of the Russian politicians says Russia is on the map in Syria in quite the wrong way, so a visit to Israel may help to counterbalance that unstable situation. Putin’s discussions on the subject of Iran will enhance some of the problems in relations between Russia and Israel. Russian president has told that Israeli military strike on Iran’s nuclear sites would be ‘ truly catastrophic. ‘
In the Syrian conflict, Russia has cleansed aside United States and Arab calls to stop sending weapons to the Syrian government, grounding it supplies only defensive arms. It has also used its veto power in the United Nations Security Council to protect Syria.