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    US Proposed Deal on Syria Offers 'Major Concessions to Russia'

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    The deal on Syria proposed by the United States to Russia offers a number of significant concessions to Moscow and would contribute to de-escalating the conflict, according to US analysts.

    Washington has offered Russia a groundbreaking deal on cooperation in Syria.

    The offer, which was sent to Moscow on Monday, proposes to share targets and coordinate in an extended bombing campaign against al-Nusra Front, The Washington Post newspaper reported, citing a source in the Obama administration.

    Thus, the US is ready to take steps which Moscow has been long waiting for. However, Washington has proposed its own conditions for cooperation. The US has requested Russia to pressure the Syrian government to stop carrying out strikes against pro-Western rebels.

    According to the newspaper, the Obama administration transmitted the text of the proposed agreement to the Russian government on Monday.

    "This would be one of the biggest shifts in strategy since the start of the Syrian civil war. The risks of a wider clash with Russia would significantly diminish, and the rebel movement would be weakened. Most important, Moscow would have an opening to both secure its interests in Syria and break its geopolitical isolation," a report by the American think-tank Stratfor read.

    According to Stratfor, the US proposal offers several concessions to Russia.

    First, Washington is planning to actively cooperate with the Russian military, including sharing data on targeting.

    The agreement also offers a joint bombing campaign by US and Russian forces against al-Nusra Front.

    "This, too, is a major concession to the Russians, who have been pushing the United States hard on the fact that extremist elements are a significant part of the rebel landscape," according to Stratfor analysts.

    "If the reports of the proposal prove to be accurate, the strategic landscape in Syria is set to shift significantly. With closer US-Russia coordination and a weakened rebel movement, the chances of significant concessions by Russia and the Syrian government will diminish. But by eliminating the risk of escalation with Russia, the deal would give Washington greater latitude in reaching its primary goal: the defeat of the Islamic State [Daesh]," the report concluded.

    Despite the fact that many agreements on Syria have not been very successful, Obama’s proposal could be constructive, Alexei Arbatov, head of the Center for International Security, the Institute of World Economics and International Relations, told Gazeta.ru.

    "I think Russia would accept the idea because it already proposed to coordinate airstrikes with the US against common enemies in Syria and to end combat actions against moderate rebels and Kurds," he said.


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    terrorism, military conflict, cooperation, Daesh, Al-Nusra Front, Syria, United States, Russia
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