Iranian, Russian Diplomats Meet Ahead of Astana Syria Talks

Iranian, Russian Diplomats Meet Ahead of Astana Syria Talks

TEHRAN (Tasnim) - As a new round of Syria peace negotiations will be held in the Kazakh city of Astana in early May, ranking diplomats from Iran and Russia held a meeting to discuss the most recent developments in Syria and to coordinate policies for the settlement of crisis in the Arab country.

In a meeting on Thursday, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Jaberi Ansari and Russian President’s Special Envoy on Syria Alexander Lavrentiev held talks on Tehran-Moscow cooperation for the resolution of crisis in Syria within the framework of the Astana peace negotiations.

The next meeting on the Syrian crisis settlement in Astana is expected to take place on May 3-4.

Reviewing the latest developments in Syria, the two diplomats discussed the ways to secure and expand a ceasefire in the war-torn country and to facilitate political negotiations for ending the crisis that has beset Syria for 6 years.

The meeting, which lasted more than three hours, also saw talks on the approaches to countering the terrorist groups fighting against the Damascus government.

Diplomatic efforts to end fighting in Syria have gained momentum in recent months with the announcement of a ceasefire in the Arab country in early January.

Syria has been gripped by civil war since March 2011 with various terrorist groups, including Daesh (also known as ISIS or ISIL), controlling parts of it.

According to a report by the Syrian Center for Policy Research, the conflict has claimed the lives of over 470,000 people, injured 1.9 million others, and displaced nearly half of the country’s pre-war population of about 23 million within or beyond its borders.

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