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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Envoy to Middle East

JERUSALEM -- Russia is sending a special envoy to the Middle East in an attempt to extricate the Israeli-Syrian peace talks from deadlock, an Israeli official said Friday.

The Russian ambassador to Israel informed Israeli officials that the envoy, Nikolai Kartusov, will arrive in the region next week, said Foreign Ministry spokesman Aviv Shiron.

Kartusov, a former ambassador in Iraq, will visit Jerusalem, Damascus and Beirut, Shiron said.

An attempt by U.S. President Bill Clinton to revive the stalled talks failed last month because the two sides were divided over a strip of land on the northeastern shore of the Sea of Galilee, Israel's main source of drinking water.