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Putin Awards Lifetime Monthly Pension To Israeli WWII Vets

Russian President Vladimir Putin issued a decree Monday that gives lifetime pensions to Israeli veterans of World War II who served in the Soviet armed forces.

Israeli citizens who served in what Russians call the Great Patriotic War will receive 1,000 rubles ($17.30) per month for life, as will underage prisoners of concentration camps, the state-owned TASS news agency reported.

Widows or widowers of war veterans will receive 500 rubles ($8.68) per month, as will adult concentration camp survivors.

Around 10,000 veterans of World War II live in Israel, according to the country’s Ministry of Immigrant Absorption.

Putin’s declaration was announced the same day that he and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke by phone and agreed to meet “soon” to discuss regional issues. Russia is a supporter of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who is also propped up by Iran. Netanyahu has told Putin that Israel will not accept a buildup of Iranian forces on its border.

The two countries have worked together to ensure that their two armed forces don’t attack each other when engaging in Syria.

Contact Aiden Pink at pink@forward.com or on Twitter, @aidenpink

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