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MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The Russian government hopes that Saudi Arabia will determine the date of Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud's visit to Russia soon in the light of escalation of diplomatic crisis between Qatar and its neighbor states, a source from the Russian Foreign Ministry told Sputnik Tuesday.
Earlier in the day, Kremlin said that Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed situation regarding Qatar with the Saudi King in a telephone conversation as the crisis around Doha does not promote the consolidation of efforts on the Syrian reconciliation and the fight against terrorism.
"There is an invitation from our leadership for the King [to visit Russia]. It has been under review of the Saudi side for a long time, not less than a year. We hope that soon the dates convenient for the both sides will be determined," the source from the ministry said.
On June 5, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates cut off diplomatic relations with Qatar, expelled all Qataris and banned flights to and from the country, while other states later joined their actions. The dispute centered on Qatar’s public support for Islamist terror groups such as Hamas, outlawed in many other countries. Doha denied the accusations and said that no retaliatory measures would be taken.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met with his Qatari counterpart Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani on Sunday, saying that Moscow calls for direct talks between Qatar and other Arab states to overcome the diplomatic crisis and confirmed its readiness to continue dialogue with Doha in all spheres.
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