Report says Syrian opposition group FSA agrees to meet Russian officials in UAE

Source:Xinhua Published: 2015-11-5 17:21:36

Syria's Free Syrian Army (FSA) opposition group has agreed to meet with Russian officials in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) next week, pan-Arab al-Mayadeen and other Arab media outlets reported Thursday.

FSA representatives will meet with officials of Russia's defense and foreign ministries in Abu Dhabi, the UAE capital, late next week, the reports said.

The news came weeks after Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Moscow was ready to help the FSA rebels if they fight against militants of the Islamic State (IS) group.

Lavrov said the Russian air force could support the FSA, an offer which was turned down at the time by the FSA.

Late last month, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said Russia maintains contacts with Western-backed rebels in Syria, confirming that some FSA representatives had already visited Moscow, as part of Russian efforts to push for a dialogue in Syria in tandem with its airstrikes there.

"Someone is arriving; someone is leaving; all of them are saying that they are representatives of the Free Syrian Army," Bogdanov said on Oct. 26.

It wasn't clear what pushed the FSA, which has repeatedly accused Moscow of attacking its positions inside Syria, to agree to meeting Russian officials.

On Oct. 6, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said all Russian actions in Syria aim for a political settlement of the Syrian conflicts.

"The political track and political settlement is the final objective of all the actions of Russia," Peskov said. "This is also certainly the only possible goal of the whole international community as well as the Syrian leadership."

Posted in: Mid-East

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