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Russia 'consulted, heard and feared' in the Middle East

Moscow weighs benefits and risks of leverage and leadership in the Syria crisis and the Middle East peace process.
Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) meets with Saudi Arabia's King Salman in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia October 5, 2017. Sputnik/Alexei Nikolsky/Kremlin via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. - RC1C4DF4B090

To use a stock market metaphor, for Russia, “the political market of the Middle East is booming,” Maxim Suchkov writes. “The ‘shares’ it has acquired by engaging with Syria and other countries are rising in political value, and Russia feels it’s prepared for long-position investments.”

“It may be just a matter of perception,” Suchkov adds, “but Moscow is now seen as a primary go-to for regional states that have been flocking to the Russian capital throughout the year. Most, if not all, only hope to get Moscow on board to solve their own regional, local and even tribal conflicts of interests. Nevertheless, Russia can praise itself for getting what it was aiming for: to be consulted, heard and feared.”

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