Russian President Medvedev: Gaza tragedy must end
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev says there is a human tragedy in Gaza and although all problems can't be solved, nations must do their best to end it, Haaretz reported.
Medvedev spoke Wednesday in Turkey, his second stop in the region after Syria where he said that Israeli-Arab tensions threaten to draw the Middle East into a new catastrophe, adding Moscow's weight to a diplomatic push to ease antagonism between Israel and Syria.
On the Palestinian conflict, Medvedev said "we are facing a human tragedy in Gaza."
Russia has been building up its influence as a Middle East mediator, pledged its assistance in pushing the region toward peace.
Turkey is also pursuing a similar policy and mediated between Syria and Israel.
Medvedev told Syrian President Bashar Assad on Tuesday that he hoped to increase cooperation with Syria in the oil, gas and atomic energy sectors.
"Cooperation on atomic energy [with Syria] could get a second wind," Medvedev said at a press conference with Assad in Damascus.
The Russian leader gave no further details on what nuclear cooperation had been discussed.
"Political coordination continues in an organized, ongoing way. We concentrated on activating our economic cooperation," Assad said at the press conference.
Russian news agencies quoted Assad as saying that he had discussed with Medvedev the possibility of building power plants, including nuclear ones, in Syria.
Meanwhile, the Syrian news agency SANA reported Tuesday that Assad has asked Medvedev to help remove nuclear weapons from the Middle East.