Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday invited German Chancellor Angel Merkel to Russia next weekend to discuss the rising tensions in the Middle East following the death of Iranian general Qassem Soleiamani.

The Kremlin confirmed the meeting is set to take place on January 11 but did not state where it would take place. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas will also attend.

As a permanent member of the UN security council, Russia is “indispensable” when it comes to solving political conflicts, said German government spokesperson Steffen Seibert.

In addition to the Middle East crisis, the conflicts in Syria and Libya, where Turkey has just begun deploying troops, will also be on the agenda. Russia said it will support Germany’s peace initiative in the region.

It is thought both leaders will also want to discuss the Ukraine situation, ongoing since the Russian annexation of Crimea in 2014.

kmm/rt (dpa, Reuters, AFP)

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