Hamas Delegates Arrive in Moscow for Talks – Foreign Ministry

Delegates from the Palestinian militant group Hamas have arrived in Moscow for talks, the Russian Foreign Ministry announced Thursday evening.

“I can confirm that representatives of the [Hamas] Palestinian movement are visiting Moscow,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at a weekly briefing.

“We will inform you additionally about its contacts,” she added.

Moscow had not previously announced plans for talks with the militant group, which launched an attack on Israel earlier this month, prompting an unrelenting bombardment of the Gaza Strip by the Israeli military.

Hamas’ delegation is reportedly led by Moussa Abu Marzouk, a senior member of the militant organization.

Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Boganov said earlier Thursday that Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas is set to travel to Moscow for talks with President Vladimir Putin “soon.”

The state-run news agency RIA Novosti later reported that Hamas had met with Bogdanov, and during the meeting, the delegates “commended Putin’s position and the efforts of Russia’s diplomacy.”

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was visiting Minsk on Thursday.

The Kremlin has said it maintains ties with both Hamas and Israel in an effort to mediate the war between Israel and Hamas and retain its influence in the Middle East.

Hamas’ visit to Russia this week is the first since the militant group launched a surprise attacked on Israel on Oct. 7.