USA officials are increasingly anxious that Russia’s plan to defend and support the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad could conflict with coalition airstrikes and other military operations against the Islamic State.
At a meeting in London with United Arab Emirates Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed, Kerry said the USA president hoped that talks would “help define some of the different options available to us as we consider next steps in Syria”.
The Pentagon will take the lead in the discussions but the exact level, venue and timing have yet to be determined.
U.S.-Russian military relations were suspended after Russia annexed the Crimea region of Ukraine, but that does not disallow conversations between leaders.
Military talks between the USA and Russia on the Syrian crisis began Friday with a telephone call between Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Russian Minister of Defense Sergei Shoygu.
He said it was important to forge a political agreement in Syria and end the hardship of Syrian people.
One US official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said four tactical Russian fighter jets were sent to Syria.
“The secretary emphasized the importance of pursuing such consultations in parallel with diplomatic talks that would ensure a political transition in Syria“, Cook said, in a statement.
US officials said in recent days that they are trying to glean the precise reasoning behind Moscow’s recent deliveries.
Kerry also said he had spoken on Wednesday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who office announced earlier that he would visit Moscow next week to discuss Syria with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
What do you believe must happen in order for peace to come to Syria? “It is vital to avoid misunderstandings, miscalculations (and) not to put ourselves in a predicament where we are supposing something and the supposition is wrong”.
“Is Russian Federation prepared to bring him to the table?” Any such decision would be politically contentious in Russian Federation , and it remains unclear how long Iraq would be willing to leave its airspace open to Russian Federation for.
“Obviously, there are questions about that”, he said.
Islamic State imposed a curfew in two parts of the city.An activist group called Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently said on its Twitter feed: “There is news about a large number of martyrs and wounded”.
If Russia’s proposal for military cooperation with United States forces actually works, Washington can achieve its goal of defeating ISIL and Moscow “can boast that they recreated [the] World War II grand alliance”, Vlahos argued.
The USA has been concerned about how to respond to Russia’s increased support for Assad and how to interpret the intent behind the delivery of tanks, helicopters and other military equipment to a base in the coastal province of Latakia.