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KERRY, LAVROV TO DISCUSS SYRIA IN COMING DAYS

BEIRUT, Lebanon, - U.S. Secretary of State, John Kerry, said that, he would meet his Russian counterpart in the coming days, to discuss an American proposal for closer military cooperation and intelligence sharing on Syria.

Kerry told reporters that, he might meet Russian Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, in Geneva, but indicated detailed talks were more likely to take place on the sidelines of a gathering of South-east Asian nations in Laos, on Monday and Tuesday.

Kerry defended the U.S. proposal, which has been greeted with deep scepticism by top American military and intelligence officials.

"The president of the United States has authorised and ordered this track," he said. "It is the president's desire to test whether or not the Russians are prepared to do what they said, during our negotiations in Moscow that they will do."

"I don't comment on internal negotiations" within the U.S. government, Kerry said. "The place for these arguments to be argued is in the (White House) Situation Room with the president of the United States, and he has made a decision."

The proposed agreement - which Kerry discussed in Moscow with Russian President, Vladimir Putin, last week - would require the Syrian government to cease attacks on U.S.-backed Syrian opposition fighters. In return, Russia would receive U.S. intelligence help, to target militant groups in Syria, such as the Daesh and al Qaeda affiliate Nusra Front.

"We're going to test this very carefully, based not on trust, based on specific steps," Kerry said, of the diplomacy with Moscow. "So far, it is showing a modicum of promise which, hopefully, we can complete."

Source: Name News Network