“And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I [am] against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal:” Ezekiel 38:3
Russia is ready to back a Palestinian bid for statehood at the United
Nations General Assembly later this month, Deputy Foreign Minister
Mikhail Bogdanov said.
“If the Palestinians appeal to the
United Nations to recognize their statehood, Russia will give its
support,” Bogdanov said yesterday in response to e-mailed questions from
Bloomberg News. The Palestinians have the right to form a viable state
living in peace with Israel, he said.
The move won’t erase the need for a negotiated settlement with Israel
and Russia stands ready to host leaders from the two main Palestinian
factions to assist efforts to form a unified administration of the West
Bank and the Gaza Strip, Bogdanov said.
Leaders of Fatah, the secular group that rules the West Bank, and
Hamas, an Islamist faction that controls the Gaza Strip, signed an
agreement in Cairo on May 4 to set up a joint interim government that
would serve for a year and pave the way for new elections. Talks on
implementing the agreement have stalled over a dispute about Prime
Minister Salam Fayyad, whom Hamas is seeking to replace.
“We believe a rapid achievement of Palestinian unity is one of the
key factors needed to drive forward the Palestinian- Israeli peace
process,” Bogdanov said.
Hamas is considered a terrorist organization by the U.S., European
Union and Israel and the Israeli government has said it won’t enter into
talks with the Islamist group unless it renounces violence, recognizes
Israel’s right to exist and agrees to honor past peace agreements.
The Middle East peace Quartet — the U.S., UN, EU and Russia — is
trying to restart peace negotiations between Israel and the
Negotiations broke down in September 2010 after Israel refused to
extend a 10-month partial freeze on construction of settlements in the
West Bank. Palestinians say they won’t negotiate while building
continues. source – Bloomberg
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