According to reports, Israel paid more than $ 1 million to obtain the COVID-19 vaccine for Syria as part of a secret prisoner-swap deal.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed last week that his warm relations with Russian President Vladimir Putin helped the return of a 23-year-old Israeli woman, who was being held captive in Damascus.
But instead of direct prisoner-swap for the two Syrian shepherds, as previously revealed, Israel actually paid Russia to send its Sputnik V vaccines to Syria to facilitate the swap, According to the times of israel And other Israeli media.
Netanyahu questioned Saturday about reports that “not a single Israeli vaccine” had been delivered to Syria – but Israel paid Russia to supply the vaccine without Israel.
“We brought the woman back. I’m glad we did. I thank President Putin for doing this, ”he told reporters. According to the wall street journal
“I wouldn’t add more than that because that was a Russian request,” he said.
The Associated Press said the vaccine deal was for $ 1.2 million, while a source Told al jazeera It was for “millions of dollars”. The full details of the deal were censored by the Israeli military, the outlet said.
Israeli military affairs correspondent Yoav Limor wrote in Israel, “It is lawful for the Israeli government to decide to deviate from the previous norms and pay with another form of currency.”
“However, the decision to hide is shocking and worrying. Obviously, someone was very inconvenienced by this case.”
The WSJ said the Israeli government declined to comment on the inclusion of vaccines in the prisoner-swap deal.
According to the WSJ report, Russian officials have not commented on the agreement, while the Syrian state news agency quoted an unnamed source as saying that the vaccines for coronovirus were part of the deal.
With post wires