(JNS) Russia plans to establish a consular office in Israel’s capital that will act as a branch office of its Tel Aviv embassy, according to an official statement released on Friday.
The move will solve a long-running dispute over a plot of land in Jerusalem purchased by Russia in 1885, located today on the corner of King George and Ma’alot streets.
According to a compromise agreement reached on May 18, the Jerusalem Municipality will release its hold on the plot and all its claims on Russia for unpaid taxes and levies, according to Israel Hayom.
The city will also cancel its plan to expropriate part of the land for the Jerusalem light rail, and allow the Russians to register a 100-metre-long strip of land under their ownership for a road to the future diplomatic complex.
In exchange, Israel will gain another diplomatic mission in Jerusalem.
“We believe that this step fully serves the interests of further strengthening friendly multifaceted relations between Russia and Israel, as well as goes in line with our country’s unchanging course towards a fair Middle East settlement,” the Russian Embassy said.
Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen welcomed the agreement, and thanked Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Leon and the teams at the ministry and the Jerusalem Municipality for making the agreement possible.
The site of the planned consular office is currently being used as a car park, and will continue to be used in that capacity until construction commences.