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Middle East risks major war with 'eye-for-eye' approach — Russian diplomat

Russian Ambassador to Israel Anatoly Viktorov urged efforts to avoid such a scenario

MOSCOW, April 15. /TASS/. The Middle East may find itself facing a major war if the situation in the region devolves to an "eye-for-an-eye" scenario, Russian Ambassador to Israel Anatoly Viktorov told Rossiya-24 television.

"If the situation develops according to the eye-for-an-eye [principle], nothing good will come of it as the Middle East may be drawn into a major region-wide war," the diplomat said.

He urged efforts to avoid such a scenario. "We hew to the position that all parties that have a say here should show maximum restraint amid tensions," Viktorov maintained as he said that a large number of unresolved crises in the region, primarily the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, were at the root of the current situation.

Commenting on a potential Israeli response to Iran’s April 13 attack, the ambassador pointed to some controversial statements from Israeli officials and questioned the agenda of the United States. "I cannot see any US constraining role. Time will tell if the United States is seeking to stabilize the situation there or fan the flames," Viktorov added.

Earlier, the Russian Foreign Ministry said that the top diplomats of Russia and Iran had discussed the situation in the Middle East in a conversation. Iran’s top diplomat informed his Russian counterpart about measures Tehran had taken "in response to Israel’s April 1 airstrike on the consulate office of Iran’s embassy in Damascus," the ministry said. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir Abdollahian also reaffirmed their position toward an immediate ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, resolving the most pressing humanitarian issues and establishing sustainable conditions for direct negotiations in accordance with UN resolutions on a two-state solution for Palestinian-Israeli peace, the ministry added.