U.S. Secretary meets Putin to forge cooperation in Syria

| Updated: Jul 15, 2016 17:58 IST

Washington, July 15 (ANI): US Secretary of State John Kerry met with Russian President Vladimir Putin and held discussions about boosting military and intelligence cooperation against Islamic State (ISIS) and al Qaeda in Syria. Kerry met President Putin at the Kremlin late on Thursday. The U.S. State Department said that Kerry expressed concern about repeated violations of a cessation of hostilities by the Moscow-backed Syrian government. It said the two also discussed the need to need to increase pressure on groups like Islamic State and the Nusra Front, al Qaeda's affiliate in Syria. The statement added that Kerry met the Russian President to discuss about establishing conditions that can enable political transition talks to resume between the opposition and the Assad regime. Kerry emphasized that absent "concrete, near-term steps, diplomatic efforts" could not continue indefinitely. ?On his part, President Putin said that his last phone conversation with U.S. President Obama convinces him that both parties have a sincere desire to pursue the process and yield tangible results. "I'd like to note our mutual efforts to settle and resolve the conflicts that we believe are of importance and should be resolved," said President Putin. According to the State Department, discussions between Secretary Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Friday morning are expected to explore the initiatives in further detail. (ANI)