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Russia Hopes To Build On Success Of Truce Brokered With U.S. In Syria: Lavrov

Russia will build on the success of a cease-fire in southwest Syria and seek further opportunities to cooperate with the United States in resolving the Syrian conflict, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on July 10.

"We will try, on this basis, to take further steps forward," Lavrov said at a news conference in Moscow.

Lavrov said Russia has durable contacts with U.S. officials over the conflict in Syria, and he hopes they will be able to broker similar cease-fires in other parts of the country.

Lavrov's counterpart in the United States, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, expressed similar sentiments when he announced the deal to impose a cease-fire in Syria's southwest last week. The truce took effect on July 9 and appears to be holding.

Lavrov suggested that the United States more actively participate in Syrian peace negotiations Russia has sponsored periodically along with Iran and Turkey in the Kazakh capital Astana.

The United States so far has dispatched only an observer to those negotiations and has objected to the role Iran has pledged to act as a guarantor of any peace deal coming out of the talks.

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.

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