Israel says Netanyahu was in Russia, confirming disinformation
Israel's deputy PM confirmed that PM Netanyahu had visited Russia, which has triggered media accusations of official disinformation.
Israel's deputy prime minister confirmed on Saturday that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had visited Russia but declined to elaborate on the affair, which has triggered media accusations of official disinformation.
"He was in Russia. It created some controversy about the way it was published in Israel," Dan Meridor told Reuters in Geneva on the sidelines of a conference about global issues hosted by Britain's International Institute for Strategic Studies.
Netanyahu angered some Israeli newspapers on Thursday over what they described as lies issued by his office about a secret flight to Russia.
Explaining why he had disappeared from public view for a day, a statement issued on Monday by the prime minister's office quoted his military attache as saying that Netanyahu had visited a security installation in Israel.
Israeli media reported he had toured a facility of the Mossad intelligence agency. But on Wednesday, Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth reported that Netanyahu had, in fact, flown secretly to Moscow over possible sale of Russian anti-aircraft missiles to Iran.
The air defence missiles issue has been a sore point in relations between Moscow and Israel, which has lobbied Russia to pull away from selling them to Iran, saying they could protect nuclear facilities if Israel was to launch air strikes.
Reuters Last Mod: 12 Eylül 2009, 14:14