28 September 201618:42

Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's telephone conversation with US Secretary of State John Kerry

1758-28-09-2016

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On September 28, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov spoke by phone with US Secretary of State John Kerry at the latter’s initiative.

Both officials expressed their deep concern over the situation in Syria, primarily in Aleppo. Mr Lavrov again emphasised that quite a few anti-government units that Washington calls “moderate” have not merely refused to carry out the September 9 Russian-US agreement on consolidating the truce and providing humanitarian access, but are merging with Jabhat al-Nusra and continue fighting against the Syrian army side by side with this al-Qaeda affiliate. Mr Lavrov stressed the need for the United States to fulfil as soon as possible its long-standing commitment to separate US-backed opposition units from terrorist groups, and said that any connivance with extremists is unacceptable.

Mr Lavrov drew Mr Kerry’s attention to the revelations of Jabhat al-Nusra field commanders in the media about external support they receive, including US arms supplies, and the claim of the Western-backed Syrian opposition leader Riad Hijab that Jabhat al-Nusra is not a terrorist organisation.

The officials discussed the possibility of normalising the situation in Aleppo by returning to the basic principles of Russian-US agreements on facilitating a settlement in Syria.

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