Lavrov, Kerry to meet in Switzerland on Saturday to discuss Syria

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and US Secretary of State John Kerry will meet in Switzerland on Saturday to discuss the Syrian crisis.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday that the two top diplomats would meet in the Swiss city of Lausanne to consider measures that could be taken to find a solution to the Syria crisis.

According to the Russian ministry, foreign ministers from Iran, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey will also attend the talks.

Meanwhile, the US State Department confirmed that Kerry would attend the talks, adding that he will also take part in an international meeting in London on Sunday to brief his European counterparts on the situation in Syria.

Kerry will attend both meetings to discuss “a multilateral approach to resolving the crisis in Syria, including a sustained cessation of violence and the resumption of humanitarian aid deliveries,” his spokesman, John Kirby, said.

Lavrov hoped that the talks in Switzerland could help “launch a serious dialogue” based on a failed ceasefire in the Arab country.

“We would like to have a meeting in this narrow format, to have a businesslike discussion, not another [UN] General Assembly-like debate,” the Russian foreign minister told CNN in an interview on Wednesday.

Syrian pro-government soldiers patrol the area of Awijah as they advance in Aleppo’s militant-held neighborhoods, on October 8, 2016. (Photo by AFP)

A brief ceasefire in Syria that was brokered by Russia and the United States collapsed last month.

The US-Russia brokered truce aimed to allow humanitarian access and joint attacks against militant groups, which were not covered by the agreement, including Daesh and Jabhat Fateh al-Sham.

Syria blamed militant groups for the failure of the ceasefire, saying they “did not commit to a single element” of the deal.

Russia also criticized the United States for not doing enough to rein in militants in Syria to protect the truce deal.

The conflict in Syria, which flared in March 2011, has claimed the lives of more than 400,000 people, according to an estimate by UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura.

By Press TV