Russia Seeks ‘Honest’ Cooperation in Syria: Lavrov

ATHENS (AFP) – Russia seeks “honest cooperation” for a political solution in Syria, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (pictured) said on Wednesday as Moscow declared a brief truce in the war-ravaged city of Aleppo.

“We hope our partners will draw (the) necessary conclusions (so that) we will all aim for honest cooperation… for a political process involving both the government and opposition forces,” Lavrov said at the start of an official visit to Greece.

However, he insisted that Washington help enforce a United Nations Security Council resolution condemning support for extremist groups in Syria.

“When we adopted this resolution, I remember US Secretary of State John Kerry’s words. He said: ‘Whoever wants to be part of (the political) process must sever links to terrorists’,” Lavrov said through a translator.

“Almost a year has passed and we await these words to be carried out,” he added.

Russia has accused the US-led coalition of failing to rein in hardline Syrian rebels, warning that the chances of a political settlement to the crisis was now remote.

In turn, the West has accused Moscow of committing possible war crimes in Aleppo through indiscriminate bombing to support a brutal Syrian government offensive.

Moscow has been conducting a bombing campaign in Syria in support of long-time ally Bashar al-Assad since September 2015.

More than 300,000 people have been killed since Syria’s war devolved from a widespread protest movement against Assad’s rule in March 2011 to a multi-front war between rebels, jihadists, Kurds and regime forces.


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