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Palestinian leader’s aide says Russia could become bridge between Palestine and world

February 20, 2:58 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Nabil Shaath expressed the Palestinians’ praise for the responsibility Russia assumed while settling conflicts in the Middle East

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Nabil Shaath

Nabil Shaath

© Zurab Javakhadze/TASS

MOSCOW, February 20. /TASS/. Palestine would like to view Russia as a mediator in bridging its positions with other countries, Nabil Shaath, and aide to the President of the Palestinian National Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, said in an interview with the Moscow-based Kommersant daily.

"We’d like Russia to be a bridge with the whole world, not only with the US," Shaath said. "Russia has always been a partner and a friend and it always wanted to settle problems of the Middle East."

He expressed the Palestinians’ praise for the responsibility Russia assumed while settling conflicts in the Middle East.

"But we wouldn’t like to build a bridge with the US," Shaath said. "We’d like to have a new format of negotiations where the US would be one of the participants, not the main actor."

President Mahmoud Abbas said in the course of earlier talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin the Palestinian National Authority had no plans to cooperate with the US in the status of Middle East peace process intermediary.

Abbas voiced the hope for the formation of a multilateral mechanism where Washington would be just one of the actors. He said the US Administration’s decision to move the American embassy in Israel from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem was a slap in the face of the Palestinian nation.

He also criticized other steps that the US had made.

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