President Vladimir Putin of Russia and Prime Minister of Lebanon Rafiq Hariri are discussing the situation in the Middle East, Palestine and around Iraq. Their talks have started several minutes ago in the Kremlin's representation cabinet. On opening the meeting Putin noted that he "would like to exchange opinions" with the Lebanese premier "on the situation being shaped in the Middle East, Palestine and around Iraq." Hariri, in turn, stated that Russia "plays a special role in the peace process in the Middle East." The Russian President congratulated the Lebanese premier on his birthday and presented him with a gift. This is a box wrapped in green paper with an imprint of Russia's coat-of-arms and dressed with a ribbon. It is still unknown what the Russian President presented Mr. Hariri with. Addressing the Lebanese premier the head of the Russian state noted that Russia is glad to meet a person "who did a lot to develop relations between the Russian Federation and Lebanon." Rafiq Hariri thanked the Russian President for a reception and for, as he said, "pleasant gesture" meaning the gift. "I thank you with all my heart," said the Lebanese premier.