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Putin to talk with Saudi’s King Salman following Assad’s Russia meeting

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as seen in Damascus, Syria November 14, 2017. (Reuters)
(Sputnik/Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin via Reuters)
(Sputnik/Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin via Reuters)
DUBAI: Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold a telephone conversation with the king of Saudi Arabia on Tuesday to inform him about his meeting with Syrian President Bashar Assad, the Kremlin said.
“Today there will be Putin’s telephone conversation with the king of Saudi Arabia, and one can certainly expect that Putin will inform his Saudi counterpart about yesterday’s meeting,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told a conference call with reporters.
Putin had previously said he planned to talk to US counterpart Donald Trump on the telephone on Tuesday after the unannounced meeting with Assad in Sochi.
Putin said he intended to “hold consultations” with the leaders of other countries.
Assad visited Sochi in Russia on Monday to meet with Putin, the Kremlin announced on Tuesday.
Russian state TV said the two leaders held bilateral talks on Monday and then met with Russian military chiefs.
It was the second time Assad has traveled to Russia to meet with Putin in the course of the country’s six-year civil war.
The first was in October 2015, shortly after Russia launched its military campaign in Syria to shore up Assad’s forces. The Russian intervention has turned the war in favor of Assad.
According to the Kremlin, Assad said that Damascus is interested in promoting a political process after the government defeats “terrorists” in the country and added that he is interested in working with any party that seeks a political settlement. Assad also thanked Russia for its role in “saving our country.”
Meanwhile, Putin hailed Assad’s apparent readiness to cooperate with all parties seeking a peaceful settlement of the Syrian crisis and added that he plans to speak to US President Donald Trump and regional leaders about the Syrian issue.
Putin also said that the visit by Assad came ahead of visits by the presidents of Turkey and Iran to Russia, planned for this week.
The meeting in Sochi comes a week before UN-sponsored peace talks are to resume in Geneva.
Assad’s office confirmed the visit on its Facebook page.

(With AFP and Reuters)

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