12:22 GMT05 December 2020
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    Sergey Lavrov said that Ambassador to France Alexander Orlov will represent Russia at this weekend's Israeli-Palestinian conflict settlement conference.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) Ambassador to France Alexander Orlov will represent Russia at this weekend's Israeli-Palestinian conflict settlement conference, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Friday.

    "Another attempt to confirm these [UN-adopted settlement] documents will be at the upcoming conference in Paris, where our Ambassdor in France will participate," Lavrov said at talks with Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) secretary-general Saeb Erekat.

    Lavrov reiterated Moscow's position that "the need to move toward direct negotiations between Israel and Palestine is overdue."

    Israel refused to take part in the Sunday, January 15 conference, saying that it preferred to hold bilateral talks directly with Palestine.

    Moscow is still ready to host talks between Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu whenever the sides are willing, Sergey Lavrov said.

    "As you know, we were ready to host the leaders of Israel and Palestine in Moscow back in September last year. We are ready at the current moment, as soon as both sides will be able to confirm their willingness," Lavrov said.

    Speaking alongside Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) secretary-general Saeb Erekat, Lavrov expressed worry over the "frozen" state of Israeli-Palestinian talks and vowed to assist in launching direct and substantive negotiations.

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