MOSCOW, January 14. /TASS/. The negotiations on Syria need to focus on the settlement rather than the fate of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova told a press briefing on Thursday.
"The main thing that was done by the end of the year is that the countries that are major players both in the region and in the Syrian settlement managed to reach a common understanding that it is necessary to focus on the political settlement in Syria, leaving aside the issues that many consider to be a matter of principle but realize they will not reach a consensus," the diplomat said.
"Assad’s fate has not been discussed within the framework of the ‘Vienna format’ either in Vienna or in New York, and this made it possible for countries to make huge progress," she noted.
"We understand perfectly well and hear from our colleagues that Assad’s fate continues to worry them," Zakharova added. "We believe that this is an issue that should be resolved by the Syrian people. For us this is an issue to which we have given the answer. But, probably, that is what diplomacy is all about - to look for solutions to the most difficult issues."