Russia welcomed on Wednesday U.S. President George W. Bush's proposal to hold an international meeting on peace settlement between the Palestinians and Israel, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Mikhail Kamynin said.
"It's important to move towards peace in the Middle East on the basis of collective efforts of the entire world community and with the leading role of the Quartet of Middle East negotiators," Kamynin was quoted by the Itar-Tass news agency as saying.
He added that in cooperation with the League of Arab States the Quartet could act as the organizer of the peace conference.
"We hope the international meeting proposed by President Bush will contribute to preparations for a (full-scale) peace conference, as support to it is getting broader everywhere," Kamynin said.
On Monday, Bush announced in a televised speech that his country would resume financial aid to the Palestinian National Authority and that an international conference would be held this fall, which would bring together Israel, the Palestinians, and some neighboring Arab states, to help resume the stalled Middle East peace talks.