Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir plan to meet this week in a move that could signal a new opening in Soviet-Israeli relations, The New York Times reported Tuesday.

The meeting, to take place in New York, was arranged a few days ago by both countries' representatives at the United Nations after the Russians expressed interest in opening a dialogue with Shamir, aides to the prime minister told the newspaper.

The meeting is the latest development in a series of recent moves that have stepped up contacts between the two countries, which have not had diplomatic relations since the Soviets broke them off 21 years ago.