Damascus may join Jerusalem and Moscow in ‘Syria Taskforce’

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reiterated Jerusalem’s determination in the continuation of “military actions” against Iranian military entrenchment in neighboring Syria. During his weekly cabinet meeting, the Premier briefed ministers on his talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin last week; saying that ‘as promised,’ the focus of the discussions was on the Iranian issue.” Netanyahu added that he made it “unequivocally clear” that Israel will never allow and take all necessary measures to prevent the establishment of a long term Iranian presence in Syria.

While the Prime Minister reaffirmed his agreement with the Russian President ‘to continue maintaining the “security coordination mechanism” between their respective militaries, with the declared aim of avoiding friction during Israeli operations on Syrian territory. He also pointed to an unprecedented agreement between Moscow and Jerusalem “to establish a joint team” that will work to advance a joint Russian-Israeli goal of removing foreign forces from Syria.

He also made vague mention of “other elements” that are expected to join Israeli National Security Adviser Meir Ben Shabbat and his Russian Counterpart Nikolai Patrushev in the formation of a multilateral-taskforce, aimed at removing foreign forces from Syria. Sources told TV7, on condition of anonymity, that President Putin demanded the participation of additional members in the taskforce, including senior officials from the Assad regime. It is important to note, however, that neither the Israeli Prime Minister’s office nor the Russian President’s spokesman agreed to elaborate on their previous statements to TV7 pertaining to last week’s meeting.