Press release on Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov’s meeting with a delegation of Hamas leaders
On September 19, Special Presidential Representative for the Middle East and Africa and Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov met with a Hamas delegation led by Political Bureau member Mousa Mohammed Abu Marzook. The delegation is in Moscow on a working visit.
During the meeting, the parties had an extensive exchange of opinions on Middle East problems with an emphasis on the situation in the Palestinian territories, including the Gaza Strip. The Hamas delegation presented its principled approach in favour of overcoming the internal Palestinian rift as soon as possible. Evidence of this is a statement approved by the Hamas movement following talks with representatives of the Egyptian authorities in Cairo on September 17, which announced the dissolution of the so-called administrative committee, called on the national unity government to extend its power to the Gaza Strip, and agreed to hold Palestinian general elections and resume a dialogue with Fatah.
The Russian side stressed that Moscow had accepted the Hamas statement with satisfaction as a step in the right direction in the context of the movement’s new “moderate” political programme announced on May 1 of this year, including its acceptance of the objective of creating a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders and achieving Palestinian national unity.
Russia consistently supports consolidation of the Palestinian ranks on the Palestine Liberation Organisation and Arab Peace Initiative political platform as a necessary condition for realising the Palestinian people’s legitimate aspirations to establish an independent state of their own in keeping with the principles of international law. We also intend to actively help the Palestinians for the purpose of improving the difficult socio-economic situation in the Gaza Strip.