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MOSCOW, January 11./TASS/. In a telephone conversation on Monday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and US Secretary of State John Kerry confirmed support for intra-Syrian negotiations.
"Discussing the Syrian issue, the sides confirmed support for efforts of Staffan de Mistura, Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General, towards organizing negotiations of representatives of the Syrian government and a representative delegation of the opposition circles with an aim to achieve political settlement," the Foreign Ministry informed.
The ministers "exchanged opinions on other topical international issues, including the implementation of the Minsk Package of Measures for the settlement of the crisis in Ukraine, the worsening of relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia, the conflict in Yemen, the situation on the Korean peninsula after a nuclear test carried out by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea," the ministry said.
Sergey Lavrov and John Kerry "agreed to continue a dialogue during their personal meeting in the near future," it added.
Moscow and Damascus stand for the soonest launch of a wide intra-Syrian dialogue without preliminary conditions, the Russian foreign ministry said on Monday after a meeting between Russian president’s Middle East and Africa envoy and Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov and Syrian Ambassador to Russia Riyad Haddad.
"Priority attention was focused on the political settlement of the Syrian crisis," the ministry said. "The sides once again stressed the topicality of the soonest launch of a broad intra-Syrian dialogue on the basis of the Geneva communique of June 30, 2012 and United Nations resolution 2254 of December 18, 2015 without preliminary conditions."
"The two diplomats also discussed current issues of the bilateral agenda," the ministry said, adding that the meeting had been initiated by the Syrian ambassador.