Russia says Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas postpones visit to Moscow

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Russia said Friday that Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas had “postponed” a trip to Moscow that was planned for this month.

Russia -- which has working relations with Israel, with Palestinian authorities and with Hamas -- has said several times that a visit by Abbas to Moscow was possible without previously giving a date.

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Russia’s deputy foreign minister Mikhail Bogdanov told state media on Friday that a trip planned for November 15 had been moved.

“It has been postponed. On the request of the Palestinian side,” he said, cited by Russian news agencies.

Bogdanov said Palestinian officials had informed Moscow that “the situation now is difficult” and that Abbas “cannot leave the region.”

Bogdanov said Russia was “maintaining working contact (with the Palestinian side) constantly by phone.”

Russia has good relations with both Israel and Hamas, which it does not consider a terrorist organization.

President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly called for a creation of a Palestinian state as a long-term solution to the conflict in Israel.

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