The plight of an Israeli citizen jailed for seven years by Russia for a minor drug infraction will be on the agenda of an annual meeting of Israeli and Russian diplomats on Thursday, according to media reports.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu pledged to Naama Issachar “back home” during a Likud rally on Wednesday. Sources cited by The Jerusalem Post said Netanyahu is “committed to that goal” and bilateral talks are taking place.
Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz said he instructed his office to stress that Israel expects Issachar will “quickly be returned…to her family” and that “Israel places great importance on its relations with Russia.”
The consular meeting comes as a Russian court hears the Issachar’s appeal on the sentencing to seven and a half years in prison for possession of a small quantity of on drug offenses after a small quantity of an illegal substance found in her luggage at a Moscow airport in April.
The issue is to be brought up during Thursday’s Consul-Dialogue meeting, along with the matter of 46 Israelis who were detained for several hours at Moscow’s Domodedovo airport on Wednesday, for which no reason was given. apparently in retaliation for Israeli policy barring Russians for various reasons. As of December 1, 5,771 Russian citizens were denied entry this year, according to both Russian and Israeli officials, according to The Times of Israel.