Hamas Meets Russian Officials in Moscow for Urgent Hostage Release Talks
In a significant diplomatic development, a delegation from Hamas arrived in Moscow on Thursday to engage in discussions with Russian officials concerning the release of Russian hostages and other foreign nationals currently held in Gaza. According to the Israeli government, there are at least 220 Russian citizens being held as hostages by Hamas.
The delegation included Mousa Abu Marzook, the founder and political leader of Hamas, who met with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov. This meeting was reported by the state-run Tass news agency.
Reportedly, Mousa Abu Marzook, who resides in exile in Qatar, had initially met with Deputy Foreign Minister Bogdanov and the Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister, Ali Bagheri Kani, in Doha before traveling to Moscow.
The Russian Foreign Ministry issued a statement confirming the presence of Abu Marzook in Moscow and elaborated on the purpose of the meeting, stating, “Contact with him took place in pursuit of the immediate release of foreign hostages held in the Gaza Strip, and issues related to ensuring the evacuation of Russian and other foreign citizens from the territory of the Palestinian enclave were discussed.”
Subsequently, Hamas issued its own statement, commending Russia’s President Vladimir Putin for his efforts to bring an end to what they referred to as “the crimes of Israel that are supported by the West,” as reported by Russia’s RIA news agency. This diplomatic engagement reflects ongoing efforts to address the complex issue of hostages and foreign nationals in the Gaza Strip.