MOSCOW, February 6. /TASS/. Moscow should play a key role in brokering a settlement to the Middle East conflict. This issue is on the agenda for the upcoming meeting between Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Russian President Vladimir Putin on February 12 in Russia’s Black Sea resort of Sochi, Palestinian Ambassador to Russia Abdel Hafiz Nofal told TASS ahead of Abbas’ trip to Russia.
"Certainly, we want Russia to play a key role in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict," the diplomat said, when answering a pertinent question. "This is going to be discussed during the February 12 negotiations in Sochi."
"The new US stance [on the issue], after the statements by [US President Donald] Trump made America’s leadership in the Israeli-Palestinian settlement unacceptable for us and now it is deadlocked," he explained. "We are not talking about excluding the US from these negotiations, rather we are talking about the need for an international partnership."
"Therefore, the two presidents will search for opportunities to create a new mechanism, discuss a new vision for a solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict," the envoy noted.
In light of this, the ambassador confirmed Palestinian readiness for direct talks with Israel.
"One of the key purposes of [Abbas’s] visit [to Russia] is to confirm Palestine’s willingness to negotiate and discuss Russia’s role in this process," he explained. "We reaffirm our commitment to the peace process.".