Russia’s Putin to Host Bennett for Iran Talks Next Week

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi visits the Bushehr nuclear power plant, in Iran, Oct. 8. (Official Presidential Website/Handout via REUTERS)

Russian President Vladimir Putin will host Prime Minister Naftali Bennett for talks on Iran’s nuclear program and other regional security issues, Bennett’s office said on Tuesday.

The meeting, held at Putin’s invitation, will take place in Sochi on Oct. 22, the Israeli statement said.

The diplomatic visit is slated to take place in the Russian city Sochi. Bennett and Putin are expected to discuss various diplomatic, security, and economic issues of interest to Israel and Russia, as well as regional issues – first and foremost, Iran’s nuclear program.

Last Saturday, Moscow issued an announcement that Russian weapons systems had helped Syrian forces intercept several missiles fired at the T4 military base near Homs. International media attributed the strike, which targeted pro-Iranian militia assets, to Israel.

On July 5, Bennett and Putin had their first official phone call following the establishment of the Bennett-Lapid government. During the conversation, Bennett mentioned a “historic bond between the Russian and Jewish peoples” and discussed the importance of Russian aliyah to Israel.

Shortly after the Bennett-Lapid government was sworn in, the Kremlin released a statement in which Putin said he expected that Bennett’s government would facilitate a “further development of constructive bilateral cooperation.”

Kan News reported in early July that a summit between the two leaders was already in the works.