Kerry, Lavrov begin Syria talks in Moscow

Moscow (AFP) – US Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov began talks in Moscow on Tuesday in an effort to keep the brittle Syrian peace process on track.

“I think the world benefits when powerful nations with a long history with each other have the ability to be able to find the common ground,” Kerry said in televised remarks.

“And today I hope we will be able to find some common ground,” said Kerry, who is set to be received by Russian President Vladimir Putin later in the day.

Lavrov for his part said he was also ready to discuss any bilateral issues Kerry deemed important.

“Later today we will tell President Putin what we have discussed and I hope that your visit will be fruitful.”

Kerry and the UN envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, want to hold the next round of Syrian peace talks on Friday in New York, but Moscow has so far refused to confirm the date.