Russia returns tank seized by Syrian troops in 1980s to Israel

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Kremlin.ru
The tank is now installed at the Tank Museum in Moscow

Russian President Vladimir Putin has granted the request of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to return the tank seized in the fight near the village of Sultan-Yacoub to Israel.

Russia decided to return the tank seized in the fight near the village of Sultan-Yacoub during the First Lebanon War to Israel, the Israeli Embassy said in a press release seen by Interfax on May 29.

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu raised the question at the request of General Staff Chief Gadi Eizenkot at his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin last month, as the tank was the only memory for the families of the missing soldiers.

"Late last week, Israel was informed that President Putin had granted the request of Prime Minister Netanyahu for the return of the tank, transferred by the Syrians to the Russian army and installed at the Tank Museum in Moscow, to Israel," the press release said.

Netanyahu informed about the decision the families of the missing tank crewmembers: Tzvi Feldman, Yehuda Katz and Zechariah Baumel.

A delegation of the Israeli Defense Forces' Artillery Corps is now visiting Moscow. It is considering ways of the tank's soonest return to Israel jointly with representatives of the Russian army.

"I thank Russian President Vladimir Putin for granting my request for the return of the tank seized in the fight near the village of Sultan-Yacoub to Israel. The families of missing Zechariah Baumel, Tzvi Feldman and Yehuda Katz have been unaware of the fate of their sons for 34 years, they do not know where their tombs are. This tank is the only evidence of that battle, and it will now return to Israel thanks to President Putin," the press release quoted Netanyahu as saying.

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