Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu will arrive Israel on Monday for talks with the country’s defense and prime ministers.
This will be the first visit of the Russian defense minister since he occupied this position in 2012.
The visit will take place following an announcement of the new Iran strategy by US President Donald Trump. The US also imposed additional sanctions on the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).
The Israeli media is directly linking the visit with the conflict in Syria where the Syrian-Iranian-Russian alliance playes a key role.
Earlier this year, Tel Aviv made mutliple attempts to get Moscow’s support in its attempts to reduce the Iranian influence in Syria. However, it seems no results in this goal have been achieved so far.
The upcoming talks will likely be another step in the ongoing diplomatic standoff over the conflict. Israel sees the growing Iranian influence in Syria as a direct threat to its position in the region.
Right now, Israel is likely seeking to get a place around the negotiation table used by Russia, the US, Iran and Turkey to find a final solution of the conflict. Nonetheless, it looks that Tel Aviv has little to suggest to Moscow for this.
Furthermore, even if Russia has some will to negotiate Syria-related issues with Israel, it will be very complicated to implement some Russia-Israel solution on the ground. Israel, Russia, Iran, Syria, the US and Turkey are deeply involved in the conflict and any large-scale Russia-Israel cooperation could undermine the military and diplomatic successes achieved by Moscow since its direct intervention in Syria in 2015.