Mideast 'Quartet' to meet in Berlin next week

Germany's foreign minister will host his Russian and US counterparts and the UN secretary general next week, convening the so-called Mideast "Quartet" to discuss developments in the Middle East. Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier will meet Russia's Sergey Lavrov and US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, as well as UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, on May 30 in Berlin, spokesman Jens Ploetner said. "The most recent escalation of violence in the Gaza Strip, as well as in parts of Lebanon fill us, all members of the Quartet, with great concern and are sure to be an important issue at this meeting," Ploetner said.