Putin Calls Assad to Discuss Peace Talks, Chemical Weapons

Putin Calls Assad to Discuss Peace Talks, Chemical Weapons
# 14 November 2013 17:26 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday held a phone conversation with his Syrian counterpart to discuss anticipated peace talks and the process of dismantling the war-torn nation’s chemical arsenal, APA reports quoting RIA Novosti.

The conversation with Bashar Assad, whose regime is battling rebel forces in an over-two-year civil war, was requested by the Russian side.

The presidents expressed hope that Syria’s main opposition groups would “adopt a constructive approach” to the planned peace conference and “participate,” the Kremlin said in an English-language statement.

“The two leaders also talked about work by international inspectors to oversee the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons,” the statement reads.

The Russian president also spoke positively about the Syrian authorities’ cooperation with an international team of chemical experts to seize and destroy the arsenal.

The joint team, acting under the auspices of the UN and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, arrived in Syria this fall in accordance with a US-Russian plan.

It has not yet been decided how or where destruction of the chemical weapons will be carried out.

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