Russia sent envoys to Israel to prepare for the Annapolis peace conference with the Palestinians.
Alexander Saltanov, a top aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin; and a senior official from the Foreign Ministry in Moscow came to Jerusalem on Thursday for high-level talks.
Though the United States is hosting the upcoming Israeli-Palestinian talks in the Maryland capital, other powers in the diplomatic Quartet are closely observing.
Some have speculated that if Annapolis succeeds, Russia could host an Israel-Syria summit.
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, British Foreign Secretary David Miliband and French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner are to arrive in Israel next week for final coordination prior to Annapolis.