Russia looks for bigger Mideast role

Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov heads to the Middle East on Sunday for a five-day visit during which he will highlight security issues in his talks with regional leaders, a foreign ministry spokesman said in Moscow.

    Ivanov will discuss security
    issues with Arab leaders

    Ivanov is hoping to increase Russia’s role in the “peace process” between Palestinians and Israelis and to push the United States to speed up the formation of an Iraqi government.

     

    Ivanov is expected to show Moscow’s willingness to take part in joint monitoring operations with US forces in the Middle East, according to foreign ministry spokesman, Alexander Yakovenko.

     

    “We for our part are ready to join them,” he was quoted as saying by the RIA Novosti news agency.

     

    The “extreme acuity” of the situation in the Middle East “and the lack of trust between the parties in conflict” means that reconciliation will be difficult to achieve, Yakovenko said.

     

    Therefore, the external monitoring teams will play “a key stabilizing role in the movement towards peace”.

     

    Ivanov is now in Italy after visiting Belgium.

     

    He is scheduled to go to Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt and the Palestinian territories, but not Israel.

     

    The foreign minister will discuss with Arab leaders security issues concerning completion of the first stage of the US-sponsored “road map” plan, Yakovenko said.

     

    These include Israeli withdrawal from Pales

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    The War in October: What Happened in 1973?

    The War in October: What Happened in 1973?

    Al Jazeera examines three weeks of war from which both Arabs and Israelis claimed to emerge victorious.