[QODLink]
Americas

US and Russian officials meet amid tensions

Secretary of State John Kerry says nations must find ways to work around disagreements on Syria and other issues.

Last Modified: 09 Aug 2013 17:23
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Lavrov (left) and Kerry agreed that their goal was for Syria's rival forces to negotiate [EPA]

United States and Russian officials has opened talks in Washington DC, two days after US President Barack Obama cancelled a meeting with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin.

Secretary of State John Kerry and Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel hosted Russian counterparts Sergei Lavrov and Sergei Shoigu for about five hours of strategic and security talks.

"USA and Russia must find ways to work around their sharp differences and agree on approaches to Syria and other global trouble spots", Kerry said on Friday. 

Relations have been strained recently over their differing policy on Syria, and  Moscow's decision to grant asylum to the US spy programme whistleblower Edward Snowden.

"We will discuss these differences today, for certain, but this meeting remains important above and beyond the collisions and the moments of disagreement," said Kerry.

"Both of us and our countries agree that to avoid institutional collapse and descent into chaos, the ultimate answer is a negotiated political solution,'' he added in reference to Syria.

Lavrov echod Kerry in stressing the need to get Syria's government and opposition talking in Geneva.

Obama's cancellation this week of a summit in Moscow over Putin's decision to give Snowden asylum put to rest any notion of a much-vaunted "reset" of ties with Moscow sought by the US.

US officials expect no breakthroughs on Friday, but they say the very decision to go ahead with the talks despite the current frictions is significant in itself.

245

Source:
Agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Weaving and handicrafts are being re-taught to a younger generation of Iraqi Kurds, but not without challenges.
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
Featured
Libya has seen a blossoming of media outlets, but the media landscape is as polarised as the politics on the streets.
As nuclear age approaches eighth decade, visitors flock to historic bomb craters at New Mexico test sites.
Venezuela's president lacks the charisma and cult of personality maintained by the late Hugo Chavez.
Despite the Geneva deal, anti-government protesters in Ukraine's eastern regions don't intend to leave any time soon.
Since independence, Zimbabwe has faced food shortages, hyperinflation - and several political crises.
join our mailing list