Russia Promises Caution on Palestinian Arms Supplies
Russia promised March 28 to take into account international opinion when drawing up agreements for arms supplies to the Palestinian Authority and said it would hold off on scheduled deliveries.
Ă˘â‚¬ÂťWe donĂ˘â‚¬â„˘t want to do it behind someoneĂ˘â‚¬â„˘s back,Ă˘â‚¬Âť Sergei Ivanov said at a news conference in Moscow.
Ă˘â‚¬ÂťThese agreements have to be transparent and take into account all the parties of the conflict, as well as the Quartet mediators,Ă˘â‚¬Âť Ivanov said.
The international diplomatic Ă˘â‚¬Ĺ“QuartetĂ˘â‚¬Âť on the Middle East conflict is made up of the European Union, Russia, the United Nations and the United States.
Israel is concerned that military supplies to the Palestinian Authority could be used against Israel under a government led by the radical Hamas movement, which has claimed dozens of anti-Israel attacks.
Ă˘â‚¬ÂťThe government has changed in the Palestinian territory. Elections are underway in Israel. We will talk about it after a stabilization of the situation,Ă˘â‚¬Âť Ivanov said.
Last month, the armed forcesĂ˘â‚¬â„˘ chief of staff, General Yury Baluyevsky, said Moscow was ready to deliver two Mi-17 helicopters and up to 50 armored personal carriers to the Palestinians Ă˘â‚¬â€ť equipment meant to give the threadbare security force there a boost.
Hamas visited Moscow earlier this month on the invitation of President Vladimir Putin after a sweeping victory in parliamentary elections in January. Soon after the visit, Russia released $10 million (8.3 million euros) in emergency aid for the Palestinian Authority.