Moscow increasingly aspires to play the role of mediator in the Middle East, but how seriously should we take this? Russia, along with Turkey and Iran, has been attempting to mediate between the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and some of its opponents in negotiations in the Kazakh capital, Astana, and in Geneva. There have also been reports that Moscow has not only offered to mediate between Saudi Arabia and Iran, but that it has even hosted some discussions between them. In addition, Moscow has offered to mediate between Israelis and Palestinians, and between warring factions in Yemen. There have been suggestions that Russia could mediate between opposing factions in Libya as well.