Russia says Iran pull out from Syria is unrealistic

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi enter a hall during a meeting in Moscow, Russia July 4, 2018. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin

Moscow: Russia has said that demands for Iran’s complete withdrawal from Syria are “unrealistic.”

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Wednesday after meeting with his Jordanian counterpart that Iran is one of the key powers in the region, and that it would be “absolutely unrealistic” to expect it to abandon its interests.

He said regional powers should discuss mutual complaints and negotiate a compromise.

Russia and Iran have provided crucial military support to Syrian President Bashar Al Assad’s forces, helping them turn the tide in the civil war.

Israel has said it will not tolerate an Iranian military presence in Syria and has launched military strikes against Iranian targets there in recent months.

Lavrov said Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Donald Trump would discuss the situation in southern Syria, where government forces are waging a new offensive, at their July 16 summit.

He said a cease-fire in the region brokered by Russia, Jordan and the US had envisioned the withdrawal of non-Syrian forces and the deployment of Syrian troops along the frontier with Israel.

Meanwhile, Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said dozens of trucks are waiting for Syrian permission to supply humanitarian aid from Jordan to Syria.

Safadi was speaking at a news conference following talks with Lavrov in Moscow.

After artillery strikes hit Jordanian territory from Syria, he said Jordan’s armed forces were ready to defend country’s interests.


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