Russian President Vladimir Putin has held a phone call with incoming Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
In a statement from the Russian Foreign Ministry, Putin made the phone call to congratulate Prime Minister-elect Netanyahu on his election victory in November. The foreign ministry added, “There is mutual confidence that Russian-Israeli relations will continue to develop progressively, and contacts at various levels will continue.”
Prime Minister-elect Netanyahu also released a readout of the call, noting that the two spoke about the war in Ukraine. A spokesman said Netanyahu “hopes a way will be found quickly to end the war [with Ukraine] and the suffering it has caused.”
Iran also on the table:
During their call, Netanyahu and Putin discussed the Iranian threat posed to Israel, despite Russia’s deepening ties with the nation. According to a spokesman, Netanyahu clearly stated that he was “determined to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons.” Netanyahu added that Israel would not allow Iran the ability to “establish a military base” on Israel’s northern border.
The call between the two leaders comes as both Netanyahu and Putin have had a relatively close relationship during their times in office. It remains to be seen how their relations will develop as Russia has begun deepening its ties with Iran. Both Israel and Iran view each other as terrorist states and have been foreshadowing a potential war for decades.