They discussed the Iranian threat, the ongoing situation in Syria, ways to restart the negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians as well as the strategic relations between the two countries.
President Peres stressed that Israel will not tolerate a nuclear armed Iran which is threatening to destroy Israel. He further stressed that Israel is part of the global coalition that is working to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon through diplomacy and economic sanctions.

 President Peres meets with Russian President Putin in Moscow

 

Photo: GPO

(Communicated by the Office of the President)

On Thursday, 8 November 2012, President Shimon Peres held a working meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, in the Kremlin. The two presidents conducted a private meeting between the two of them which lasted an hour and a half, after which President Putin invited the Israeli delegation led by President Peres, to a joint lunch with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, the Russian Deputy Prime Minister, Russian Ambassador to Israel Sergey Yakovlev and Israeli Ambassador to Russia Dorit Golender.

During the private meeting the two men discussed the Iranian threat, the ongoing situation in Syria, ways to restart the negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians as well as the strategic relations between the two countries. At the end of the meeting President Peres said, "It was a positive and efficient meeting and it is clear from the discussion that Israel’s future and security is important to President Putin."

President Peres stressed that Israel will not tolerate a nuclear armed Iran which is threatening to destroy Israel. He further stressed that Israel is part of the global coalition that is working to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon through diplomacy and economic sanctions. However, President Peres made clear that Israel’s enemies should not underestimate the seriousness of Israel’s intentions – if the other options don’t succeed then all options remain on the table. President Peres raised the matter of maintaining Israel’s qualitative advantage in relation to its military power in the Middle East and told reporters that he was felt positive about the depth of understanding and sensitivity President Putin showed to the matter of Israel’s security.

President Putin welcomed President Peres to Russia and to the Kremlin and thanked him coming to Russia. President Putin said that in June of this year he had unveiled a monument in Israel in memory of the soldiers of the Red Army who had fought against the Nazis and that today President Peres had taken part in a ceremony to inaugurate the Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center in Moscow. President Putin added that the museum was Russia’s contribution to the fight against racism, a hatred of foreigners and nationalism and that it would serve to maintain the memory of the Holocaust and the horrors of the Second World War. President Putin concluded by adding that Russia will never forget the victims of the Holocaust.

On relations between Israel and Russia President Putin expressed his satisfaction that the relations were getting stronger in a number of fields including energy, medicine, and space research in which a cooperation agreement has already been signed.  Of the meeting between the two, President Putin said that he had spoken to President Peres about the developments in the Middle East, the situation in Syria, the Iranian nuclear program and that Russia has a deep understanding of how to solve those problems. President Putin added that peace between Jews and Arabs in the Middle East was important for Russia and that he calls upon both sides, Israel and the Palestinians, to renew direct negotiations. The President of the Russian Federation concluded by congratulating President Peres on his title of honorary professor of the Russian Academy and said that it was a worthy way to recognize President Peres’ contribution to science, education and peace.

It should be noted that President Peres again thanked President Putin for the role the Red Army played in the victory over Nazi Germany and added that, "Russia carried a great burden on its back to ensure that the horrors of the Second World War will never be repeated. It is a heavy and serious responsibility. You said during your visit that whoever denies the Holocaust can give rise to a new Holocaust and that you will not allow a nuclear Iran that threatens."

On a personal note President Peres addressed President Putin and said: "From my advanced years and experience I turn to you and to the re-elected President of the United States, President Obama. You are both young leaders with many years ahead of you, you have a historic opportunity to join hands to put an end to the terror and grave threats we all face and to free the world, together, from bloodshed and despair."