Russia will have high-level meeting on Middle East

Russia plans to host a high-level meeting on the Middle East at the end of this year, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Wednesday.

Addressing a meeting of the Russian-Arab Business Council in Moscow, Lavrov said increased business ties between Russia and Arab countries would help development in the Middle East.

"This issue may be discussed at a high-level meeting on the Middle East problem to be held in Moscow at the end of this year," the top Russian diplomat was quoted as saying by news agencies.

There were no details on who would be invited to participate in the meeting and what specific issues would be on the agenda.

In April, Russian President Vladimir Putin called for a Moscow peace conference on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. That suggestion that was coolly received by Washington and the idea of holding such a conference has not been raised since.

Russia joins the European Union, the United Nations and the United States in the so-called Quartet of Mideast peacemakers.

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