Russia fears that the murder of Hamas leader sheikh Yassin may disrupt the efforts of the Middle East settlement quartet of mediators (Russia, the USA, the EU and the UN), the Russian Foreign Ministry's official spokesman Alexander Yakovenko said at a press conference in RIA Novosti on Tuesday.
Sheikh Yassin, his son and guards were killed by missiles fired from an Israeli helicopter when they were returning from the mosque early on Monday.
"We have urged the Israeli and Palestinian parties to stay calm in order not to cause a new wave of violence in the Middle East," Yakovenko pointed out.
Russia supports the idea of working out a new UN Security Council resolution on the Middle East, he said. "This should be a consensus resolution," he added.
He recalled that now the UN was actively discussing the Middle East situation. "None of the UN Security Council's members is interested in further escalation of confrontation in the region," Yakovenko pointed out.
When answering journalists' questions about the Qatari citizens detained in Russia, the diplomat said that investigation was underway.
Two citizens of Qatar were detained in the Sheremetyevo airport on February 26th.
"There was a corresponding request of Russian special services. I cannot say more," Yakovenko explained.
Earlier a spokesman of the Federal Security Service's public relations center told RIA Novosti that the detainees were kept in the investigation ward Lefortovo. In compliance with the Russian criminal procedural legislation, they are charged with crimes for which the Russian Criminal Code envisages long-term imprisonment.
The Qatari authorities have full information on the conditions in which their citizens are held, the spokesman said.
According to the Qatari mass media, the detainees are Naser Ibrahim Saad and Ibrahim Akhmed Naser Akhmed, representatives of the Qatari Wrestling Federatoin.
Earlier it became known that the Qatari sportsmen had had problems with travel documents and had not declared a large sum of money.
On the night of February 18/19 the Qatari authorities detained three Russian citizens on suspicion of their having murdered a Chechen separatist leader, Zelimkhan Yandrabiyev. One of them, a diplomat, was later releasted. The Russian Foreign Ministry viewed the arrest as a provocation and demanded that the Russians citizens should be released.
Many Chechen politicians view Yandarbiyev's murder as the result of an inner conflict between militants, related also to distribution of financial support from international terrorist organizations.
Yandarbiyev was included in the UN list of especially dangerous international terrorists and Russia demanded that Qatar should deport him.
At the press conference Yakovenko also said that the government was not considering a possibility of sending Russian peacekeepers to Kosovo.
Last week Kosovo witnessed clashes between its Albanian and Serb citizens. As a result, dozens of people were killed and hundreds wounded. Albanians destroyed several Serb villages and settlements, as well as a few Orthodox churches and monasteries.
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