Putin hosts Israeli PM Bennett in Sochi

Putin hosts Israeli PM Bennett in Sochi

Russian President Vladimir Putin's talks with Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett is being held in a warm atmosphere, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday.

Putin, opening his meeting with Bennett, highlighted that a unique bond has developed between the two countries. "It is possible to say that your visit marks the 30th anniversary of the reestablishment of diplomatic relations. During this time, relations between Russia and Israel, almost unique to a certain degree, have formed," the head of state stressed.

According to Putin, there are all grounds to view the relations of the two countries precisely this way. "First of all, the Soviet Union and our country as the successor state of the USSR essentially stood at the origins of the creation of the State of Israel. Second, perhaps, is that the largest Russian-speaking community abroad resides in Israel," the president pointed out, adding that Russia has particular warm feelings towards the veterans of the Great Patriotic War residing in Israel.

Putin devoted special attention to the development of trade and economic links between the two countries. "Volume-wise, they are still modest but nevertheless they are successfully developing," he noted. The Russian president cited statistical data that over a period of seven months this year, the trade turnover between Russia and Israel has increased by 50% despite all the pandemic restrictions. According to him, the development of economic relations is taking place, among other things, due to special attention to projects in the hi-tech spheres of the economy.

During the meeting, the Russian president and the Israeli prime minister plan to consider bilateral cooperation issues in various spheres as well as exchange opinions on the situation in the Middle East, TASS reported.

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