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Israel-Russia ties unravel as Putin calls meeting over Dagestan mob incident

After a Hamas delegation visited Moscow and the anti-Israeli incident in Dagestan, the crisis between Israel and Russia is out in the open.
This photograph shows Russian National Guard (Rosgvardiya) vans parked at the airport in Makhachkala on October 30, 2023. Russian police on October 30, 2023 said they had arrested 60 people suspected of storming an airport in the Muslim-majority Caucasus republic of Dagestan, seeking to attack Jewish passengers coming from Israel. (Photo by STRINGER / AFP) (Photo by STRINGER/AFP via Getty Images)

Tensions between Israel and Russia reached a new high on Monday as Russian President Vladimir Putin called a security meeting a day after a mob stormed the airport in the southern region of Dagestan after a flight from Israel landed there and rioters tried to lynch Israeli and Jewish passengers.

The Associated Press reported that hundreds of angry men, some carrying banners with antisemitic slogans, rushed onto the tarmac of the airport in Makhachkala, the capital of the predominantly Muslim region, on Sunday night, looking for Israeli passengers on the flight from Tel Aviv, according to Russian news reports.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry summoned Russian Ambassador to Israel Anatoly Viktorov on Monday morning for what it called a "protest call" following the Dagestan incident. 

Footage released from the Makhachkala airport showed hundreds of people storming the runway, throwing stones, and searching for Jewish or Israeli passengers while chanting antisemitic slogans. At least 60 people were detained by local police following the riots. The incident took place after an airplane of the Russian low-cost Red Wings landed in Dagestan for an unplanned stopover en route from Tel Aviv to Moscow. 

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