Putin to hold separate meetings with Israeli PM, senior Iranian official before his summit with Trump

Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold separate meetings with the Israeli prime minister and a senior Iranian official before his summit with US President Donald Trump next week.

 Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu before boarding a flight to Moscow said he would have a very important meeting” with Putin today to “discuss Syria, Iran and Israel’s security needs. 

Ali Akbar Velayati, a senior adviser to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, also traveled to Moscow today for a meeting with Putin. Both the United States and Israel are concerned about Iran’s growing military presence in Syria, where it has provided crucial aid to President Bashar Assad’s forces. Russia, another key ally of Assad, has said it is unrealistic to expect Iran to fully withdraw from the country.