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    FILE PHOTO. A soldier walks down an alley through heavy damage during a government escorted visit to Yarmouk refugee camp in Damascus, Syria, Thursday, April 9, 2015

    Uniting Syrian Opposition for Dialogue With Damascus Key to Peace - Lavrov

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    Sergei Lavrov reiterated Moscow's support to establishing a dialogue between the Syrian opposition and Damascus.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Uniting Syria's opposition forces for dialogue with the country's government is one of the most important prerequisites for solving the Syrian conflict, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Monday.

    "One of the most important prerequisites for solving the crisis is to unite a wide spectrum of Syrian opposition forces on a constructive dialogue platform with the government on all the current key issues," Lavrov said at a meeting with members of the Syrian opposition.

    Syria has been in a state of a civil war since a 2011 political crisis. Government forces have been fighting on multiple fronts against opposition forces and numerous extremist militant groups, including the Islamic State and the Nusra Front.

    Russia has been engaged in international efforts to find a political solution to the ongoing conflict in Syria, and has provided humanitarian aid to the people of the conflict-torn country.

    Moscow hosted two rounds of talks between the Syrian opposition and government in 2015. During the April round of talks in Moscow, the sides to the Syria conflict agreed on an agenda defining a framework for negotiations to end the war.

    In July, Moscow expressed its willingness to host the third round of intra-Syrian peace talks. The date of the new round of consultations has not been set yet.


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