Israel's new chancellor talks with Lavrov on "regional issues" – Atalayar

Wednesday, January 4 , 2023

AFP/MAXIM SHEMETOV  –   Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov
Israel’s new Foreign Minister, Eli Cohen, spoke on Tuesday with his Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov, with whom he discussed “bilateral and regional issues”, according to the Israeli government.
“The ministers discussed a range of bilateral and regional issues. Minister Cohen discussed the Jewish community in Russia and immigrants from the former Soviet Union in Israel and their importance in the bilateral relationship between the two states,” an Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman said in a brief statement.
It was Lavrov who called Cohen to congratulate him on his assumption of the post.
This communication is the second from the new Israeli minister since he took over the foreign ministry on Thursday, and follows a phone call the day before with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
In his first speech as minister, Cohen stressed on Monday that from now on Israel will “talk less” about the war in Ukraine and said that the Foreign Ministry will present the government with a “responsible policy” on the issue.
Cohen also emphasised that Israel will continue to provide humanitarian aid to Ukraine in any case.
Today’s dialogue with Lavrov comes just days after a communication between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday.
At the time Putin expressed his confidence that the new Israeli government would continue the line of “constructive cooperation” in all sectors in the interests of “peace and security in the Middle East region”. Netanyahu, for his part, said he “hopes that a way will be found as soon as possible to put an end to the war and the suffering caused by it”.
The two leaders have had a close relationship for years, especially in Syria, where Moscow supports President Bashar al-Assad’s regime and allows Israel to bomb pro-Iranian military targets, which is important to Israel’s security interests near its northern border.
While Israel has condemned Russian military intervention in Ukraine, expressed support for Ukrainian sovereignty and sent humanitarian aid, it has not sent arms to Kiev or joined international sanctions.
For Mediterranean and Atlantic leaders, it wants to be the bridge of communication, information and understanding between cultures.