icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm

Russia's Security Council Secretary holds talks in Middle East

Russia's Security Council Secretary holds talks in Middle East
Russia's Security Council Secretary, Igor Ivanov, has met with President Mahmoud Abbas and other members of the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah. Earlier, Mr Ivanov held talks in Israel as part of his Middle East three-day tour.

In just a few days Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will sit down in the first of a series of meetings aimed at jumpstarting the stalled Middle East peace process. This is why the timing of the visit by the Secretary of the Russian Security Council Igor Ivanov is so critical.

On Thursday, Igor Ivanov met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Foreign Minister Ziad Abu Amr in the West Bank city of Ramallah.

President Abbas briefed Igor Ivanov on the latest developments in the Palestinian territories and efforts for peace following the summit last month in Saudi Arabia.

National Security Advisor Mohammed Dahlan described the meeting as fruitful.

Igor Ivanov, in his turn, said President Abbas was committed to talking with Israel. He commended the new Palestinian unity government was a positive step forward.

In Israel, Russia's Security Council Secretary met Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni. Topping the agenda was the issue of a nuclear Iran. Israel sees Iran as its main enemy, especially in the face of calls by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for the Jewish state to be wiped off the map.

Mr Ivanov re-iterated Russia’s position that the Iranian question needed to be resolved diplomatically.

Russia's Security Council Secretary also met the families of kidnapped Israeli soldiers. He said Russia was doing its best to assist them.

Next week the U.S. Defense Secretary, Robert Gates, will be in town. This is the first time a U.S. Defense Secretary will be visiting Israel in eight years.

Dear readers and commenters,

We have implemented a new engine for our comment section. We hope the transition goes smoothly for all of you. Unfortunately, the comments made before the change have been lost due to a technical problem. We are working on restoring them, and hoping to see you fill up the comment section with new ones. You should still be able to log in to comment using your social-media profiles, but if you signed up under an RT profile before, you are invited to create a new profile with the new commenting system.

Sorry for the inconvenience, and looking forward to your future comments,

RT Team.