Suleiman Heads to Moscow to Receive Award, Meet Top Officials

President Michel Suleiman traveled to Moscow on Saturday for talks with his Russian counterpart and to receive an award on his role in calling for dialogue and opening channels of communication between bickering parties.

Suleiman's three-day visit at the head of a delegation that includes deputy Prime Minister Samir Moqbel comes following an official invitation sent by Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill I.

He will be honored on Sunday by the International Foundation for Unity of Orthodox Christian Nations that awards statesmen, politicians and churchmen for consolidating and promoting Christian values in society.

The ceremony that is planned to be held at the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow will be headed by Kirill.

Suleiman is scheduled to hold talks with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and other officials on Monday and Tuesday.

A diplomatic source told As Safir daily that the meetings will focus on the situation in the region and mainly Syria. They are also expected to deal with the conditions of Christians in the Middle East, including Lebanon and Syria.

The Central News Agency said earlier this month that the president's trip to Moscow will be an opportunity to discuss Russian military assistance to Lebanon, including promises to provide Lebanon with MiG airplanes.

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