Russia ready to be ' honest mediator' following US veto on Jerusalem

AP , Tuesday 19 Dec 2017

Vladimir Safronkov
Russian Deputy Ambassador to the United Nations Vladimir Safronkov (Photo: Reuters)

Russia says it's ready to become "an honest mediator" between the Israelis and Palestinians, a role the United States has played for years.

Russia's deputy U.N. ambassador Vladimir Safronkov offered Russia's role in a speech to the U.N. Security Council Monday. It came after he supported a resolution, vetoed by the U.S., that would have required President Donald Trump to rescind his decision declaring Jerusalem the capital of Israel.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas rejected the U.S. as a mediator following Trump's action.

Safronkov said it's becoming more important to move "as possible towards direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations."

He reiterated Russia's proposal to hold a summit between the Palestinian and Israeli leaders and says his country is ready to be "an honest mediator."

Safronkov also reiterated Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's call for the Security Council to conduct "a comprehensive review of the situation in the Middle East."

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