Netanyahu spoke with Trump about Iran’s presence in Syria and thanked him for America’s ‘strong policy’ ahead of Trump’s summit with Putin.
By: World Israel News Staff
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday spoke with President Donald Trump ahead of the latter’s summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland, on Monday.
Speaking during the weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday, Netanyahu said that he and Trump “discussed security and diplomatic issues in light of developments in the region, with Syria and Iran first and foremost, of course.”
Netanyahu said that he thanked Trump “for his strong policy against Iran because since this policy has been taken, we have seen a great effect on – and inside – Iran. President Trump clearly reiterated his commitment to the security of Israel and his willingness to help the state of Israel in various fields and, of course, I thanked him for that.”
Netanyahu met with Putin in Moscow last week, where they discussed similar issues. This was their ninth meeting in three years.
Trump and Putin will discuss the ongoing civil war in Syria and Iran’s military presence in the country.
One possible agreement could see Washington give a tacit go-ahead for a Syrian army deployment along the border with Israel in exchange for the withdrawal of Iranian forces and their Hezbollah proxies, whose presence in the area Israel views as a significant threat to its security.
Israel has repeatedly said it will not allow Iran, or its Shiite terror proxies, to establish a permanent presence in a postwar Syria.
Russia, a key ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, has warned it would be unrealistic to expect Iran to fully withdraw from the country.
However, Russia has already expressed its dissatisfaction with Iran’s presence in Assad’s war-torn country. Moscow could eventually abandon its cooperation with Iran if it benefits Russian interests.
US senator Lindsey Graham recently warned Israel not to trust that Moscow will remove Iran from Syria. However, the situation could be different if Putin were presented with tangible benefits for Moscow.