Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas expected in Moscow next week

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will travel to Moscow next week for talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the opening ceremony of Europe`s largest mosque, an embassy spokesman told AFP on Friday.

AFP| Updated: Sep 19, 2015, 02:11 AM IST

Moscow: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will travel to Moscow next week for talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the opening ceremony of Europe`s largest mosque, an embassy spokesman told AFP on Friday.

"President Abbas will arrive next week to take part in the opening ceremony of the Moscow Grand Mosque," Palestinian embassy spokesman Ahmed Muslih told AFP, adding that Abbas was expected to meet Putin.

The visit comes amid Moscow`s fresh diplomatic push to resolve the four-year Syrian crisis that has claimed more than 240,000 lives, with Middle Eastern leaders -- including Jordanian King Abdullah II and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi -- flocking to the Russian capital in recent weeks. 

Abbas last visited Moscow in April, when he and Putin discussed bilateral relations, as well as peace and security in the Middle East.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is also expected to meet with Putin in Moscow next week to discuss Russia`s military support for the Damascus regime and "threats" facing Israel, his office said earlier this week.