Russian President Dmitry Medvedev phoned Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert Wednesday in an apparent effort to ease tensions between the countries amid Moscow's conflict with Georgia.
The leaders spoke at length about a host of issues, including the situation in the Caucasus, the Middle East peace process and Syrian President Bashar Assad's current visit to Moscow.
Assad and Medvedev are expected to meet at the resort city of Sochi along the shores of Black Sea to discuss the strategic alliance between the countries. The Syrian leader said he would use a visit to expand military ties with Moscow, whose arms sales to the Middle Eastern state have angered Israel and the United States. The Russian leader is expected to offer Syria advanced weaponry.
On Tuesday General Anatoly Nogovitsyn, deputy chief of staff of the Russian Military revealed the extent of the military assistance Moscow claimed Jerusalem had given Georgia.
"Israel armed the Georgian army," he told reported at a press conference held in the Russian capital.
According to Nogovitsyn, Israel provided Georgia with "eight types of military vehicles, explosives, landmines and special explosives for the clearing minefields."
Since 2007, he continued, Israeli experts have been training Georgian commando troops; and Israel had planned to supply Georgia with heavy firearms, electronic weapons and tanks, but that plan was eventually scrapped.