22:46 GMT19 October 2020
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    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that the end goals of Russia Turkey and Iran in Syria may differ at some aspects, but the countries ultimately want the Syrian conflict to end.

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in an interview that Moscow with its partners on the so-called Astana group of Syrian peace guarantors (Russia, Turkey and Iran) ultimately want put an end to the war in Syria and make sure that Syrian people could decide their fate without an outside interference.

    Lavrov also said on Tuesday that the United States assured Russia that it would ensure the separation of armed opposition from terrorists in Syria.

    "Our partners, including US ones, assured us that they would ensure the separation of the so-called moderate opposition from terrorists," Lavrov said on Russia's Channel One.

    “The only de-escalation zone remains in Idlib where several dozens of thousands extremists are still deployed. They are headed by the Jabhat al-Nusra,” Lavrov told Russia’s Channel One broadcaster on Tuesday.

    The minister pointed out that the Jabhat Fatah al Sham group, which is recognized as a terror group by the United Nations, posed the greatest threat to the stability in Syria.

    Lavrov added that Russia as well as Iran were operating in Syria at the direct invitation of Damascus while all the others were acting there illegally.

    Previously, the Russian Foreign Minister said during his speech at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations that "there is no place for terrorists in Syria, and the Syrian government has every right to seek their liquidation on its territory." He stressed that it is necessary to separate the armed opposition from terrorists, noting that it is impossible to tolerate the situation in Syria's Idlib province indefinitely.

    The situation in Idlib is tense amid reports on terrorists preparing a false-flag chemical attack against civilians, set to provoke western nations into launching a military action against the Syrian government.

    READ MORE: Terrorists Should Be Expelled From Syria's Idlib Province — Iranian FM

    Idlib province is one of Syria's de-escalation zones and a remaining stronghold of insurgency in the country. Syrian President Bashar Assad said earlier that the liberation of Idlib province was among the priorities for the Syrian military's operations. Washington has been opposing the possible offensive by Syrian government in the province: US President Donald Trump warned the Syrian government as well as Russia and Iran earlier against the possible  military operation in the rebel-held territory.

    Syrian Foreign minister Walid Muallem said earlier that the warnings by the United States would not affect the "determination of the Syrian people and Syrian army’s plans to clear Idlib and finally put an end to terrorism in Syria."


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