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UN, September 20 (Itar-Tass) —— There will be no meeting of the Middle East Quartet on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session because the sides are not prepared to start negotiations, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday.
He said he had discussed the Palestinian issue with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. “The meeting is not planned so far,” he said, adding that the United States “would like to prevent the appearance of the Palestinian question at the UN, either at the UN Security Council or at the General Assembly.”
“Russia thinks it is more preferable to start the negotiations immediately, but the sides are not prepared for that, primarily because they disagree over the preservation of international legal acts amassed on the Palestinian-Israeli settlement track for decades,” he said.
“In this light, we think that the Palestinians cannot be denied the right to ask for the UN response to the appeal they will make soon at a meeting of Abbas and the UN secretary general,” Lavrov said.
Russia and the other mediators “tried to coordinate the positions at the Quartet ministerial meeting in Washington DC in July 2011,” he said. “Russia, the EU and the UN did not gain the U.S. support, and no document was adopted. We still say that the elaboration of joint documents at the Quartet must serve the main goal of encouraging the negotiations and setting the parameters of the final agreement. This is not hard to do because the parameters have long been defined by UN Security Council and General Assembly resolutions,” he said.