Israel Asks Russia to Postpone Jewish Agency Hearing, Seeking Solution

A view shows the entrance to a Russian branch of the Jewish Agency for Israel, in Moscow, July 21. (REUTERS/Evgenia Novozhenina)

Israel has asked Russia to postpone a court hearing scheduled for Friday on the future of the Jewish Agency in the country to find time to reach an agreement on the matter, a report by Walla! News said on Tuesday.

Israel believes the issue that affected Israeli-Russian relations in recent weeks, can be resolved through negotiations, Walla reported.

Following a conversation held last week between President Yitzchak Herzog and Russian President Vladimir Putin, Israeli officials told Walla that Putin reassured his counterpart that the Jewish Agency case was “purely legal.”

Putin allegedly added that he had no intention of “punishing Israel for its growing support for Ukraine.”

Moscow’s recent request to shut down the Jewish Agency over alleged violations of Russia’s privacy law, was strongly denounced by Israeli officials. Prime Minister Yair Lapid said the move would have serious consequences for bilateral relations.

An Israeli delegation visited Russia shortly after the initial court hearing on the case in late July, hoping to make progress toward allowing the Jewish Agency to remain in Moscow, but didn’t reach a breakthrough. Herzog, who served as the head of the Jewish Agency before taking becoming President, joined the efforts discussing the issue directly with Putin.

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