PM Netanyahu lands in Moscow for talks with Putin

PM Netanyahu has landed in Moscow where he was welcomed by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov.

Netanyahu signed a soccer ball which has been signed by all the leaders who have visited Russia since the start of the World Cup.

Netanyahu and his wife Sara, announced they are taking two cancer patients with them to Russia, where they will all watch the World Cup semifinal together on Wednesday evening.

“The children—Mika Lipsker, 18, from Katzir, whom the prime minister and his wife have known for years, and Alon Eizarayev, 13, from Petah Tikva, who was born in Russia—have cancer, and will be accompanied by their parents,” a statement said from the Prime Minister’s Office.

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“I am now leaving for Moscow for a very important meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. We will discuss Syria, Iran and Israel’s security needs,” the prime minister said before boarding the plane.

“I very much appreciate the excellent direct connection, without intermediaries, between myself and the Russian president. It is very important for the national security of the State of Israel,” he continued.

After the meeting with the Russian leader, Mr. and Mrs. Netanyahu will then view the semi-final between England and Croatia.

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“They told us that we could bring two guests. We decided to bring with us two wonderful children who are bravely fighting cancer: Mika, whom my wife and I have known for nine years, and Alon, whose parents emigrated from Russia and who likes soccer very much. We are very moved that we can realize a dream for them,” the prime minister said.

The meeting between Putin and Netanyahu will be the second between the two leaders within two months, with their last meeting taking place on May 9.

Israel has threatened to open fire at any Syrian government forces that try to deploy in a demilitarized Golan buffer zone set up under a 1974 UN-monitored armistice.

A Patriot missile was fired at a Syrian drone on Wednesday afternoon, the IDF said, prompting a rocket-alert siren to go off in several communities in the Golan Heights.