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December 1, 2017 11:25 am

Russia Working to Remove Iranian Forces From Syria, Israeli Lawmaker Says

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MK Avi Dichter (Likud), chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee. Photo: Shirley Steinberg via Wikimedia Commons. – “Russia is working so that [Syrian President] Bashar Assad will control Syria and that the country will be clean of foreign forces, including Iranian forces,” MK Avi Dichter (Likud), chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, told Israel Hayom on Thursday.

Dichter, a former director of the Shin Bet security agency, this week made an official three-day visit to Russia, where he headed a delegation of six Knesset members who held meetings with Russian government officials.

Delegation member MK Ofer Shelah (Yesh Atid), meanwhile, criticized Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s handling of the Syria issue.

“The prime minister’s diplomatic failure on the Syrian matter puts Israel at risk with the presence of forces operated by Iran on our border, and with direct confrontation with Tehran,” Shelah said.

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Dichter responded by saying, “It’s a shame that Shelah, who carried himself, like the other MKs, in a stately manner during our stay in Russia, reverted to talking like a politician upon our return home.”

In addition to Dichter and Shelah, the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee delegation also included MKs Omer Bar-Lev and Eyal Ben-Reuven (Zionist Union), Anat Berko (Likud) and Moti Yogev (Jewish Home).

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