Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Moscow, Ankara to Cooperate in Solving Syrian Crisis | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Foreign Affairs Minister Sergei Lavrov (L), Russian President Vladimir Putin (C) and French President Francois Hollande at a summit on Ukraine at the Elysee Palace in Paris October 2, 2015. REUTERS

Moscow-Russian Foreign Affairs Minister Sergei Lavrov stated following talks with his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu that they agreed upon tackling the Syrian crisis as well as coordinating anti-terrorism efforts.

This meeting, which is the first since December 2015, focused mainly on the Syrian crisis that has always been a source of conflicts between Moscow and Ankara.

Lavrov said that his counterpart agreed with the Russian stance on differentiating between terrorist groups and the moderate opposition. Speaking of which, Lavrov expressed worry of the fact that the U.S. partners’ fall short to differentiate between these two groups.

Russian Foreign Minister called the moderate opposition to withdraw their forces from regions controlled by terrorists so that they wouldn’t be mistaken to accomplice with ISIS.

As for the Russia’s criticism to the Turkish borders, Lavrov made sure to express his opinion in a different way without resorting to accusations. He affirmed that all topics can be wisely discussed even the most complicated ones, including limiting the use of Turkish borders to transfer weapons to the terrorist groups in Syria.

A Russian source told Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper that what is being said about possible deals between Russia and Turkey in regards to the Syrian crisis is rumors and not true. The sources expected both countries to flip the page and cooperate to put an end to the struggle in Syria.

He made it clear that Syria is in its most complicated phase and Russia has no interest in taking actions under the table.