Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas arrives in Russia on Wednesday for an official visit, which will continue until March 16. This is his tenth trip to Russia but the first one as President of the State of Palestine, ITAR-TASS reported.
Following the granting of the Observer State status to Palestine by the United Nations Organization on November 29, last year, Abbas issued an order on January 6, 2013, to introduce a new name of the Palestian autonomy -- The State of Palestine -- to all official documents. The position of the Chairman of the Palestinian National Authority was changed as well. The position is now referred to as "President of the State of Palestine".
Russian President Vladimir Putin is to receive the distinguished guest on March 14. The two leaders are expected to discuss key matters concerning bilateral interaction. When exchanging views on international and regional problems, the two presidents will traditionally focus on the situation in the Middle East and North Africa, and on prospect of a resumption of the Palestinian-Israeli negotiating process.
Talks between Mahmoud Abbas and RF Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev are also planned. The sides are to consider the main orientations for Russia-Palestine interaction and map out plans for a further development of bilateral contacts. In furtherance of the traditional religious dialogue, Mahmoud Abbas will also meet with Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia and with Ravil Gainutdinov, Chairman of the Council of the Muftis of Russia.