Syrian President Bashar Assad held talks Monday with Russian Foreign Minister, Igor Ivanov, aimed at defusing the violence threatening to derail the Middle East peace process, reported AFP, quoting a presidency spokesman.
Syria's Foreign Minister Faruq Shara also took part in the meeting, the spokesman said, then had separate talks with Ivanov, according to AFP.
Russian officials said Ivanov would head for Beirut within a few hours on the second leg of a mediation mission, which would also take him to Israel, reported Reuters.
Speaking to reporters before the meeting, Ivanov said the situation in the Middle East was critical and required extreme caution "to prevent any further escalation in the situation and to allow a resumption of the peace negotiations."
Ivanov was sent by Russian President, Vladimir Putin, after the Lebanese Hizbollah fighters captured three Israeli soldiers in south Lebanon and clashed with Israeli forces on the Lebanese border, said Reuters - (Several Sources)
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